Top Zimbabwean karateka Samson Muripo earned a masters status after a convincing grading process in India on Tuesday.
The former world champion is now referred to as Shihan after acquiring the masters status, one of the respected ranks in the world of Karate.
Muripo now holds a 5th Dan black belt.
After receiving the good news of the upgraded Muripo, Sports and Recreation Commission Acting Director General Joseph Muchechetere heaped praises on the hardworking karateka.
“Master Samson Muripo, as is he is now known as is a hard-working, disciplined, focused and objective driven athlete who has risen from humble beginnings to a world champion in 2010 and same feat was to be repeated in February this year in Iran when he won a gold medal at the Sho Kyokhushin International Championships thus becoming a world champion once again.
This achievement was not an end, itself rather it was the beginning of greater things to come as was demonstrated two days ago when He was successfully upgraded to a 5th dan black belt thus becoming a Shihan or a Master.
The sports regulator said the latest development signifies a new era in the Zimbabwean sport.
“This signifies a new era in our Sport, Karate to be precise as we now have someone who can upgrade our Karatekas locally. This is a step in the right direction for Karate development. Our hope is that Karate will be taken to another level though the rigorous training of more Sensei’s in the near future,” Muchechetere said.
The news come hard on the heels of another success in the motor racing sport code after Axcil Jeffries came third in the Lamborghini Trophoros in Germany.
Muripo, the newly 5th dan belt fighter won gold at a high profile international competition after he became the first African to be crowned world champion at Osaka, Japan in 2009.
Muripo was voted the Zimbabwean sports person of the year in 2013 after he was crowned champion in the heavyweight category of the 2013 Sokyokushin Cup karate international tournament in Shangai, China.