BONNELLS Bay teenager Liam Yokoyama is one of the nation's leading judo exponents, winning both the junior and senior under-60 kilogram divisions at the recent South Australian International Championships in Adelaide.
Liam, 16, a Morisset High School student, was the sole entrant in the championships from the Kido Mingara Judo Academy, at Tuggerah, where he trains under coach Pete Acciari.
In the under-20 junior men's division Liam won his preliminary matches by full point scores, throwing his first opponent for a wazzari (half point) score with a sode tsurikomi goshi, holding him down for the win.
Liam's superior grip fighting and stand-up judo ended his second match quickly; he threw his opponent with a well executed high shoulder throw for an ippon and full-point win.
In the final, he executed a superb morote seio nage to win the junior men's division 60kg gold medal.
In the men's final Liam faced off against a much older opponent from Victoria. Liam established his domination with a clock choke, which his opponent narrowly avoided.
He then executed foot sweep combinations which led to a throw with his signature sode tsuri komi goshi for a wazzari and a hold down.
The win came with a shoulder throw by Liam for a full-point ippon victory.
"Liam's a judo natural with super speed and skill as well as co-ordination," Acciari said.