This week in history (3 February – 9 February)

4 February

On 4 February 1949, Michael Nursey, a founding member of the English Shotokan Karate Association (ESKA) was born.

Nursey started training in Karate when he was eighteen, under Keinosuke Enoeda and John Van Weenen. After achieving his 4th Kyu Nursey continued his training with Hirokazu Kanazawa, Shiro Asano and Michael Randall.

Nursey gained is 1st Dan in 1971 under Kanazawa. He gained his 2nd Dan in 1974 and his 3rd Dan in 1978, both under Kanazawa.

In 1979, together with Eddie Whitcher, Michael Randall, Greg Durrant, John Van Weenan and Chris and Nick Adamou, Nursey established the English Shotokan Karate Association (ESKA).

5 February

On 5 February 1964, Vernon Bell received his 1st Dan from the Japan Karate Association (JKA), following the British Karate Federation (BKF) formally agreeing to become the JKA’s agents in Britain. This was more of an honorary grade as Bell never took an actual grading examination.

7 February

On 7 February 2004 Shotokan master Tetsuhiko Asai, was made an Honorary President of the Russian National Far East University in Vladivostok. This was in recognition for his contribution to the development of education, science and culture. He was presented with a pocket watch.

9 February

On 9 February 1929 Shotokan master Taiji Kase, was born in Chiba, Japan.

Kase had studied Judo before beginning Karate. He earned a 2nd Dan in Judo by the age of 15. He started his Karate training in 1944 under the guidance of Yoshitaka Funakoshi and Shigeru Egami. He was awarded his 3rd Dan in 1949 while attending Senshu University.

As a member of the JKA, in 1965 Kase led the Japanese delegation, that included Hirokazu Kanazawa, Keinosuke Enoeda and Hiroshi Shirai on a tour demonstrating Shotokan Karate to the rest of the world.

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