Melton Thai boxing gym dominates junior world championships
Melton's Assassins Muay Thai Gym led the way once again as its young fighters dominated the WKU World Junior Championships in Birmingham.
The gym was the most successful team, bringing home six gold medals, two second places and a third in the first world junior championships to be held in the UK.
Nine Melton juniors made the trip to the West Midlands, as well as two under 15s who entered the international championships.
Of the older fighters, Saxon Nugent (15) finished second, edged out in a close final by a 17-year-old opponent, while Darum Hussain (21) took the fight at short notice, but won a great final to land an international belt,
The first of the juniors on was Lexie Peters (11) who showed her continued improvement by taking the -39kg junior world title.
Skylar Moulds (11) dominated her opening bout to reach the -45kg final where she faced an experienced opponent from London’s Team Underground gym.
But Skylar pressured and tired her opponent by moving forward to claim her maiden world title.
Her coach Mark Barlow said: “We put Skylar in the competition to get experience, but she surprised us all and won it.”
Shaydon Burt had a tough first bout in the 12-14 years -35kg category and lost on points to the eventual winner.
“Shay did well and it was a close bout,” Mark said. “Every time he fights, he improves.”
Elizabeth Griffiths faced her fourth outing in four weeks, and it showed in her sharpness.
She outfoxed her Manchester rival who couldn’t compete with the Assassin’s power and technique to claim the 12-14yrs -50kg world belt.
Aliza Agwan took on Irish fighter Ava Walsh, from Dublin, in the 12-14 -45kg final.
Ava has trained with the Assassins and fought on a show at Melton, but Aliza made a fast start, refusing to let her opponent settle and took the bout on points.
Aliza’s brother Mustafa made it two world titles for the family, overcoming hard bouts on the way to shading a very close final in the 9-11yrs -32kg class.
Naomi Blankley faced an old foe from Birmingham in the 12-14yrs -40kg final and did well to win the bout.
After sharing the opening two rounds, the Assassin took the decisive third round to claim yet another title.
Mkaylin Kneeland did well to reach the 9-11yrs -27kg final, but a few crucial mistakes cost him the verdict.
Last on for the Assassins was Cerys Hirst (12-15yrs -55kg) who was entered for experience, having fought just once before.
Cerys performed well to progress through the rounds, and fought well in losing on a close decision in the final.
The Melton gym is next in action at the big Enfusion show, in Newcastle, when Iman Barlow defends her world title once again, Thai Barlow takes on the Spanish number one, and George Griffiths fights the UK number ne at 57kg.
To go along and support, contact Iman Barlow on Facebook.