Topic: Fitness

Hawke's Bay teens set to make mark at World Youth Muay Thai Games

By Aroha Treacher
  • Northland

Three young teenage fighters from Hawke's Bay are set to make their mark at the IFMA World Youth Muay Thai Games in Thailand. Aroha Treacher caught up with the trio at training as they prepare for the global tournament. 

They fought their way through Nationals to earn their spot on the NZ team heading to Thailand.

Ropata Lewis (Jackals Gym) says, "My goal is to go over to Thailand and try and win gold silver or bronze so that I come back with a medal." 

Jayden Pye (Jackals Gym) says, "I just like the idea of fighting I really like fighting my Uncle inspired to do it because he was a Muay Thai kickboxer and that's what inspired me."

Coach Andrew Banham (Jackals Gym) says, "It's pretty big there are 140 different countries that are going to be there so when they get there it's going to be a bit of a culture shock for them."

Jahna has been in the sport for five years and will be going over there as the recently crowned junior NZ title holder.

Jahna Watson (Toa Muay Thai) says, "Honestly I don't know what to expect in my weight, in particular, there is going to be a lot of people that are taller than me probably around six foot, that's what I've been told, so I'm just going to have to train like I'm going to fight someone that tall."

Every day they train, preparing to fight against the best in their age group in the world.

Banham says, "They've been training twice a day most days and I mean they were working hard before this and since they got their place they've doubled it, so it's good to see."

They've trained hard, fund-raised hard and will be fighting hard come August 3.