Rochdale News | Sport News | Whitworth High students become Muay Thai British Champions

Date published: 10 May 2022

Two students from Whitworth Community High School are now Muay Thai British Champions after they won their fights at a tournament in Barnsley.

Finley Hudson and Alfie Hayes, both 13 and from Whitworth, are members of the town’s Valley Thai Boxing Club.

They competed in The Sandee WTKA (World Traditional Karate Association) England open, a one-day event at the Metrodome Leisure Complex in Barnsley on 23 April 2022.

Finley was in two title fights – the age 13-14 52kg and under and age 12-13 52kg and under while Alfie competed in the age 13-14 56kg and under.

Alfie, who was supported by his grandmother, said: “We compete in five one-minute rounds, but that one-minute feels like five.

“I was up against a hard lad who had won many fights before, and this was only my second tournament. For the first two rounds, I was really wobbly and I think it was nerves.

“Then I realized he had a weakness, so I exploited it and I got a lot of points. It is not about punching, it is about making contact and at the end of the five rounds he was really wobbly and he looked a bit drained. I didn’t think I would win at the start, and so was delighted.

“I could hear my grandmother cheering on me and when we went back to see my granddad, he gave me £ 10 for winning my fight.”

Finley lost out in the age 13-14 match, but his opponent in the age 12-13 group was smaller in stature although a similar weight.

He said: “It was my first proper tournament and my height advantage really paid off. I knew that I had won the fight. I like the adrenaline rush that I get when I am fighting and it keeps me healthy. “

Both Finley and Alfie said they had fellow students asking them to demonstrate some of their moves, but the rules are very strict and they are only allowed to fight in the ring, so instead they encourage other students to join the club.

Alfie used to be a boxer and took up Muay Thai about two years ago because he thought it would be a good sport to improve his fitness.

Finley used to do karate, until the hobby proved very costly, and he took up Muay Thai nearly three years ago on his dad’s suggestion.

Alfie attends training sessions at the gym four times a week while Finley goes twice.


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