was with much sadness that in late April of 1994, the
Kyokushin family across the globe learnt that its foun-der
Sosai Masutatsu Oyama had died in a Tokyo hospi-tal. He is
missed by not only the masses who have followed in his
footsteps but by the martial arts community as well.
successor. Kancho Shokei Matsui Eighth Dan was named by
Sosai himself to carry on the task of building and
preserving the name of Kyokushin.
Matsui was born in 1963, and commenced his illustrious
karate career at the age of 13. He quickly established a
firm reputation for being a karate man of exceptional skill
and ability, with a highly individual, technically superior
style of fighting. He took the basics he learnt in the dojo,
and through intense and dedicated training, he made these
techniques work for him. Students around the world continue
to try and capture some of the essence of Kancho's style
of fighting in their own training.
exceptional tournament record, over three successive years
in particular, led Sosai Oyama to call him "a true
champion". In 1985, at the age of 22, he won the 12th
All Japan Open Tournament. In 1986, he won the 13th All
Japan Open Tournament and in 1987, he won the 4th World Open
Karate Tournament. Additionally, in 1986 he succeeded in the
One Hundred Men Kumite, achieving the highest rate of
knockdowns and wins in this ultimate challenge, which only a
select few have managed to complete.
the stature of the man is confirmed in his designation as
Sosai Oyama's successor in Sosai's last will, and he now
heads the largest karate organization in the world.