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Matthew Lear

Matthew Lear.

The 15-year-old Taekwondo competitor is a member of Noble Dragon Martial Arts club in Swadlincote. He won silver in continuous sparring, bronze in point stop sparring and bronze in patterns at theWolf Academies British Open Championships, and a silver medal in sparring at the British UITF Taekwondo Championships.

Matthew says: "I have competed in three major competitions this year since being successful in my ICON application for 2014-15.

"At the English UITF Open Championships I got bronze in sparring, at the Lone Wolf Invitational TKD competition in Boston I won a bronze in sparring and gold in team patterns and at the LTSI English open Taekwondo Championships in St Albans I took a silver in sparring.

"My aspirations for the next 12 months are to continue to compete in as many competitions as I can find, together with training hard hoping for team selection for the World Championships in Argentina in 2017. This year will be a hard year as I also need to study hard for my GCSEs.

"I train with both my club Noble Dragons Martial Arts Association for around six hours a week and then four hours at the weekend at the Heart of England elite squad at Alfreton and Ripley, unless there is a competition I am attending.

"As a second degree black belt, I assist with coaching the younger lower graded students at my club and again passing on my sparring knowledge and skills at our sparring classes

"I have started WKU kick boxing this year and I am part of the England squad and have competed in Germany in June, winning gold in kumate which is a karate sparring discipline."