World OutGames: Karate

Photo Credit: Andrew Delaware
Waqas Lone, a 28-year-old financial analyst from Copenhagen, Denmark, is also a gold medalist in the first ever karate competition held for gays and lesbians at the international level. We asked Waqas about his road to the gold.

What preparation did you do to get yourself here?
Well, I trained a lot at home before I came. I came last Thursday. There hasn't been a place for me to train, so I've been running, eating well, stretching out and shadow fighting. And relaxing.

How do you feel having completed your competition?
I am really tired, but I am very happy because I've been waiting for the whole week for the karate competition. I'm tired. I didn't expect it to be that hard, but I'm OK.

What made it difficult?
Well, I heard from others that the competition wouldn't be so hard for me, that I would easily get the gold. But I had to really fight for the gold.

What did you have to do specifically to win the gold? What got you there?
Well, the first match I just had to be myself, fighting the way I normally do. But the two fights afterwards, I had to be passive. I had to wait for them because I was afraid if I attacked, they'd attack and they might be faster. I had to be a passive guy and irritate them into attacking me. That's how I won.