Young kickboxer fights his way to haul of international and national titles

Successful kickboxer Sonny Sweeting (7)
Successful kickboxer Sonny Sweeting (7)

Youngster Sonny Sweeting from Hartlepool is making a big name for himself in the kickboxing world after punching and kicking his way to a huge haul of national and international titles in less than a year.

The seven-year-old has won more than 20 medals, belts and trophies since only February when he started to compete in his favourite sport.

7-year-old kickboxer Sonny Sweeting with coach John Dawson

7-year-old kickboxer Sonny Sweeting with coach John Dawson

One of the highlights of Sonny’s year was when he was chosen to represent an England team in the World Championships in Ireland last month.

He entered four categories and came home with two gold and two bronze to add to his growing collection of titles.

Sonny, who goes to St Teresa’s RC Primary School, was also chosen to lead the team out on to the arena floor carrying the national flag.

His instructor John Dawson, from Hartlepool’s Closed Combat Arena UK, said: “He is a machine.

“Sonny has fought in most of the major shows this year that run British, European and World titles.

“At the world championships, Sonny entered four sections in one day, which is phenomenal.

“Most children enter either one or two. He won two golds and two bronzes which is no mean feat for a seven-year-old.”

Sonny took up kickboxing when he was just five, following in the footsteps of his dad.

He started entering competitions earlier this year and trains five times a week at the CCA gym in George Street.

John added: “He is such a lovely kid and is really eager to learn. His family are so supportive of him.”

At the World Kickboxing Association Scottish International Open in August Sonny was one of top 10 individuals with three golds.

Sonny’s other achievements include winning three golds at the World Kickboxing Association Scottish International Open in August.

He was one of 11 youngsters to win a Rising Star award at this year’s Hartlepool Sports Council Awards.

Sonny’s proud mam Lisa Brallisford said: “I tried to get him into football but he didn’t like it.

“He started kickboxing and just clicked with it. As a family we are absolutely over the moon with how well he has done.

“He is so humble and grounded and takes it all in his stride.”

Sonny’s family are currently looking for a sponsor to help towards his busy competition schedule.