Rising Karate national team starlet Phillippe Revaka is no more. The untimely demise of the 21-year-old was announced by the Botswana Karate Association (BOKA) on Monday morning.
The announcement of Revaka’s passing by the BOKA president Tshepo Bathai left many in shock.
“It’s with great sadness that I am informing you of the sudden passing of our National Team athlete Philippe Revaka. It is a great loss to the Nation and Botswana Karate Association. Condolences to the family and friends,” Bathai announced through a Facebook post.
Reacting to the news, national team athlete and a long-time teammate of Revaka sensei Ofentse Bakwadi, said the untimely passing of the youthful athlete came as a shock.
“When we last talked, he was telling me that he is preparing to get back to competitive karate. He told me he had started training,” Bakwadi, who was Revaka’s instructor said.
Revaka came to the attention of many in 2014 as a 13-year-old who won Botswana a gold medal at the 2nd Africa Youth Games (AYG), which were hosted in Botswana.
Following his heroics at the AYG, the then teenager never looked back and his star took an upward trajectory.
By the age of 16 years, the youthful Revaka, who was known for his immense Kata skills and execution, was already a member of the national team.
He, along with another rising starlet Mahommad Ali Hussain, joined his instructor Bakwadi and they went on to form a formidable national Kata team.
Along with the two, Revaka went on to win Botswana a gold medal at the Union Federation of Africa Karate (UFAK) Cup in 2017 while he was still 16-years old.
“When we talked, he told me that he was now putting more effort in his Kumite skills as he knew it was his weakness and he wanted to improve there,” Bakwadi said.
The youthful Revaka will be bid farewell in a private funeral this coming weekend.