Roberts claims double World Championships bronze at prestigious event

Tom Roberts won bronze medals in kickboxing and Thai boxing at the WKTA Unified World Championships in Italy.
Tom Roberts won bronze medals in kickboxing and Thai boxing at the WKTA Unified World Championships in Italy.

Tom Roberts returned from the recent WKTA Unified World Championships in Italy with two bronze medals.

Thomas, from Tingley, trains at the Agoge Performance Training Gym in Dewsbury under the guidance of Danny Turton.

The Woodkirk High School student has been training in kickboxing since he was nine years old.

Thomas had around 12 fights when he enterered a qualification tournament at the Barnsley Metrodome in April, when he finished in the top two to earn an England call up.

He went on to represent England at the WKTA Unified World Championships held in Carrara, Italy, in October, entering the kickboxing and Thai boxing categories and he returned with two bronze medals to the delight of his Woodkirk School teachers, who granted him special permission to compete.

Thomas defeated the reigning World Champion from Holland in the quarter-finals before being edged out in a closely fought semi-final.

He is already planning to challenge for the British title early next year and has high hopes of securing a return to the World Championships in 2018.

The Unified World Championships are regarded as the best of all the martial arts competitions and last month’s event was the fifth in the competition’s history which has grown from six competing federations in 2013 to 28 this year.

Agoge Performance Training is on Bradford Road, Dewsbury, and is open six days a week catering for a host of activities from fitness classes to fighters wanting to compete at elite level including adult boxing, Little Spartans classes and K1 kickboxing.

Turton, from Earlsheaton, is a third Dan kickboxer and first Dan Shoto Khan with over seven years experience in self defence and six years as a boxer.

He has also taken disadvantaged children off the streets and used martial arts to channel their energy into something positive.

Turton is a former kickboxing champion but has spent around two years out of the competitive sport but is set to make a comeback on a show in Sheffield on November 25.