Keron Bourne won the Americas stage of the Online Sambo Cup ©FIAS

Trinidad and Tobago's Keron Bourne was triumphant in the Americas stage of the International Sambo Federation's (FIAS) online tournament.

Known as the Online Sambo Cup, the event has the goal of promoting the Russian martial art across the world while filling the void left by the coronavirus pandemic.

It takes the form of an online quiz, with athletes challenged on their knowledge of sambo techniques.

This includes participants having to guess the name of sambo moves which are concealed behind special blocks on a playing board.

Players may also need to demonstrate their physical fitness through a series of exercises. 

Sixteen athletes took part in the Americas leg across two days, with Bourne defeating Uruguay's Federico Soriano in the final.

He has been rewarded with a cash prize of $500 (£400/€450) from FIAS sponsor Rosneft Oil.

"It was an amazing experience in which I had the honour to compete with some of the best sambo athletes of the Americas," said Bourne. 

Sixteen players took part from across the Americas ©FIAS
Sixteen players took part from across the Americas ©FIAS

"I'd like to thank the Sambo and Combat Sambo Federation of Trinidad and Tobago for honouring me with the right to represent our country at this historic Pan-American Online Cup.

"If we compare the online and real-life sambo competitions, the difference, of course, is obvious – in online sambo there is no physical impact, bruises or cuts, no need to recover from injuries. 

"Nonetheless, the taste of victory from this is no less sweet.

"This tournament was a great opportunity not only to compete with other sambists but also to see our friends, as we all make one big family. 

"And I am sincerely grateful to FIAS for such an experience.

"Now I would really like to return to a proper training process and to win on the mat the very next time I represent my country."

Continental events had already taken place for Europe, Asia and Africa.

Super finals for the best players from across the continents are now planned for July 19.