Hopkins awarded prestigious upgrade

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Jason Prior scored a late double for Hawks in their 3-0 league win. Picture: Mick Young

Hawks secure win thanks to late Prior double

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Derek Hopkins has been awarded his sixth Dan – a great honour marking more than four decades of dedication to judo.

The prestigious accolade was presented to the Gosport player and coach by British Judo Association chairman Kerrith Brown.

Hopkins said: ‘It was amazing.

‘I’ve been in Judo for 46 years.

‘This is something you probably never dream of.

‘After you get your fifth dan you don’t fight for grades anymore.

‘They are based on recognition.

‘I now have a red and white belt for sixth dan.

‘There’s only a couple of us in the south of England.’

Hopkins has coached his wife Sarah to many international masters titles and also works with England squad member Sam Potts.

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