Fighters and officials from PT’s Kickboxing Gym in Carrigans flew out from Dublin Airport on Wednesday morning to travel to Valkenburg in Holland where they will represent Ireland at the annual ISKA World Amateur Kickboxing Championships.
The competition is the first time members of PT’s have been selected with a total of five fighters and four officials represtenting Team Ireland with coaches Paddy Toland and Gerard Conaty also travelling with the team.
Speaking to the ‘Journal’ this week, Club PRO Sean McGill said, “There is quite a buzz throughout our gyms at the moment. We have five excellent fighters travelling with us and all are eager to get into that ring to represent their country.”
“The Team Ireland Full-Contact Kickboxers will fight up to five or six times daily over a three day period. The team will be aiming for gold medals but it won’t be easy as there are over 80 different nations competing, including the elite of USA, UK, Holland, Germany, China and Thailand.
“Our head coach, Paddy Toland, has filled each fighter in on the task ahead of them. This is a first for us at the Championships so there will be a little bit of nerves but once they are in the ring all those nerves will disapear. The fighters have been training twice a day, six days a week, for the past 10 weeks so each so every one of them are extremely confident for what’s ahead of them.”
Included in the team are current Irish Junior Champion, St Johnstone’s ‘Kid Dynamite’ Damien Duddy, Newtown man Paul ‘Hooks’ Houston, Elaine ‘The Hawk’ O’Donnell, Derrymen, current Irish Welterweight Champion, Damien ‘Dee’ McGuinness and PT’s K1 fighter, Jim ‘Mr Perfect’ Ramsey.
Officals include Cathal Duddy, Martina Cullen, Natalie McCarron and Sean McGill. Team Ireland coaches are Paddy Toland and Gerard Conaty.
PT’s Gym thanked everyone who took part in fundraising for Team Ireland kickboxers and made a special mention of the Metro Bar in Derry for providing the Team Ireland with track suits for the trip to Holland.