Milford's Kevin John awarded his prestigious karate sixth dan

Kevin John - sixth danHe’s been involved in the sport for more than 35 years – but Milford Haven Karate Club chief instructor Kevin John continues to progress his career. 

John, who took over the coaching at the club 20 years ago, has now been awarded his prestigious sixth dan.

“Just before Christmas I had a call from the governing body letting me know my sixth dan was coming up and I was going to be put forward,” he told Pembrokeshire Sport

“I was interviewed and asked was I happy to proceed with an application and of course I said yes.” 

Sure enough, John then received the call late last month telling him he’d been successful. 

“It was mixed emotions after everything that’s been going on with the pandemic and hardly being able to train. But now it’s had time to sink in I’m overwhelmed. 

“I never thought I’d reach my sixth. Colin Harding, my brilliant ex-instructor, reached five and he was something else so I’d never thought I’d pass him.” 

John currently competes at Veteran level and has represented Wales frequently during his career.

Indeed, he and a host of others had been selected to represent Wales in Poland last year before Covid-19 wreaked havoc on things. 

But now everyone involved in Milford can finally begin to look forward again, with training having just re-started following more than a year of frustration.
“We had everything in place to start back we were just waiting to be given the go ahead, 

“I’ve had massive interest, especially from youngsters, and it’s just been about managing expectations. But at last the outlook is good – we are still uncertain on the competition side of things though so it’s a waiting game on that front.” 

John did confirm that when it re-started, the club would again be taking part in the Welsh Karate League. 
And he refused to rule out going for his seventh dan - which he cannot now attain until a further seven years’ time in 2028. 

“If I can stay fit and healthy then who knows?” he said. 

“But for now I’m just happy to get going with the coaching again.”