MARTIAL ARTS: Barkston and Syston schoolboy Charlie is crowned world champion kickboxer

Charlie Digan with his father Trevor (right) and Alex Barrowman Junior.
Charlie Digan with his father Trevor (right) and Alex Barrowman Junior.
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Barkston and Syston Primary School pupil Charlie Digan travelled with the BCKA England team to compete at the WAKO Irish Open at the beginning of the month.

The event was the biggest kickboxing competition in Europe and the second largest in the world. It attracted the very best athletes and world champions from across the globe. Over the three-day event, it saw more than 4,000 fighters battle it out at this prestigious event thats ranked so highly across the world.

On the Sunday, it was all junior boys and girls that were competing, and the day that Charlie would put all his hard work and training into practice.

Charlie was fighting in the small boys eight years and under points section. He had several fights that he won comfortably before reaching the final and coming up against a Irish boy.

Charlie dominated the fight from start to finish, landing some well timed kicks and punches. His movement and speed proved to be too much for the boy on home soil, with Charlie winning the fight 8-2 to become the new WAKO Open champion.

Charlie’s father Trevor said: “This is a huge achievement for Charlie, seeing him being only one of eight people ever to win this within the BCKA over its 21-year history.

“The event was on TV and streamed live over social media. The Olympic committee were also at this event, watching closely as it’s on the verge of becoming an Olympic sport.”

Charlie’s family would like to thank Inspire+ and One Touch Football Academy, for whom Charlie plays, and family members for sponsoring and helping fund his trip. There was a kind donation to the Irish trip from Sheila and Richard Holmes.

Charlie is always looking for sponsorship and would be grateful to anyone who would like to get involved in helping him achieve more within the sport.

Anyone wishing to join the elite BCKA kickboxing class in Grantham can drop in and have a go, it’s pay as you train with no contracts for payment.

They have two classes, one on a Monday nights at The Meres leisure centre main hall between 7pm and 8.30pm, which is a mixed adult and children’s class taught by senior instructor and multi-world kickboxing junior champion Alex Barrowman, whilst the other is a kids’ class on a Wednesday night at St Anne’s School, Harrowby Road, taught by world champion instructor Trevor Digan.

For more information regarding classes, call Alex on 07930 260705.