Home > Championships, Dragon Duel > At Jump Festa With Dragon Duel Champion, Naveen Shankar

At Jump Festa With Dragon Duel Champion, Naveen Shankar

March 3rd, 2010

In July of last year, the U.S. National Championship was held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Most of the Duelists there were trying for one of the 4 spots to represent the United States in the World Championship held in Tokyo, Japan. But at the same time, a young up-and-coming Duelist was winning his Duels in the 12-and-Under National Championship. After several rounds, Naveen Shankar from Maryland emerged as the 12-and-Under National Champion. His prize? A special Winter Trip to Japan!

Winning the 12-and-Under National Championship got Naveen and his family a trip to Japan to attend Jump Festa. Jump Festa is a yearly convention in Japan that is all things SHONEN JUMP!   It’s a celebration of some of the most popular anime TV shows, like Yu-Gi-Oh!, Naruto, One Piece, Bleach, and a lot more than you haven’t seen in English yet. For two days, December 19th and 20th, over 160,000 fans came to the Makuhari Messe International Convention Complex outside of Tokyo to try new video games, watch live performances, buy convention exclusives, and DUEL!!!


The Crowd at Jump Festa

When we entered the main hall, we saw a bunch of huge inflatable characters. A giant Yusei welcomed everyone to the Jump Studio stage area, where they broadcast a number of shows.  And check out the new Stardust Dragon statue that Konami has unveiled!  This statue will be touring the United States later this year.


Left: Giant Inflatable Yusei
Right: Naveen with Stardust Dragon

Naveen had free time during the morning so he spent it at the Konami booth trying the different Yu-Gi-Oh! games.


Playing the Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s DUEL TERMINAL!


New Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s game for Xbox Live


He even had some time to hang out with Carly Carmine and Konami employees!

Naveen was joined by Korea’s “Jump Festa Invitational” Champion as they prepared to play against Duelists that waited up to an hour to Duel them.


Preparing to Duel! 


With his National Championship 2009 Game Mat, his Blackwing Deck, and his unique style of play, Naveen Dueled his way through 10 competitors. He faced a variety of Decks including Zombies, Lightsworn, Gladiator Beasts, and Blackwings.


Naveen vs. his first competitor

Naveen started off 2-0 after his first two Duels, but went 1-3 in his next 4, then finished strong with 4 wins in a row to total 7-3 against some tough competition.


Scorecard showing Naveen’s 7-3 record.

After Dueling for two hours, Naveen got the chance to be a featured Duelist on the Weekly Jump variety TV show, Dueling one of the show’s hosts. Not showing any signs of being nervous, Naveen politely shook hands with his opponent and quickly defeated him with a move Crow used on the TV series. With “Blackwing – Bora the Spear,” “Blackwing – Sirocco the Dawn,” and “Blackwing – Gale the Whirlwind” on the field, Naveen used the effect of Sirocco to have Bora gain the attack of all Blackwing monsters on the field for the final attack to end the game.


Naveen preparing to Duel on TV.

Naveen was a great sport and had a great time at Jump Festa. After the event was over, Naveen and his family decided to stay in Japan a bit longer to check out the sights and explore the country before heading back home to Maryland.

Thanks Naveen! Keep Dueling!


If you’re age 12 & under and you’re looking to Duel in the big time, you can compete in a Dragon Duel format tournament at any SHONEN JUMP Championship near you! You can get more info right here.

Also, check out Duelist League at a hobby store near you. Duelist League is only for Duelists age 14 & under!  Find a local Duelist League near you!