MUAY THAI: Levi Nicholls with his recent trophies.
MUAY THAI: Levi Nicholls with his recent trophies. Mike Knott BUN191118MUA2

NICHOLLS HAS LUCK OF IRISH: Junior off to world titles

MUAY THAI: If 14 wasn't the favourite number for Gin Gin's Levi Nicholls before the start of this month, it might be now.

The number won Nicholls an all expenses paid trip to compete next year at the world mixed martial arts titles in Ireland after dominating at the recent North Brisbane Golden Open championships.

Nicholls won the ISKA Muay Thai title at the event before winning an MMA title.

But the better news was to come after the event when he won the trip.

"I was chosen out of 25 fighters that were still there,” Nicholls explained.

"They chose a random number and I was the number. I was number 14.

"I am definitely excited to go.”

Nicholls might have gotten some luck to go overseas but don't underestimate the talent of the Wallaville athlete.

MUAY THAI: Levi Nicholls with his recent trophies.
MUAY THAI: Levi Nicholls with his recent trophies. Mike Knott BUN191118MUA6

He knows how to win.

Competing in Combudo at the event, a modified version of MMA for juniors, Nicholls lost his first fight to miss out on the first title.

He then tried his luck in a higher weight division for fun, according to him, which the teenager won to claim his first title in the sport.

"I mainly came there for (Muay Thai) but there was a chance to go into MMA,” he said.

"So I did that because I like grappling.”

Nicholls admitted a combination of learning more about the sport on the go, including the use of more grappling, which is fighting on the ground and disappointment in the first up loss spurred him on.

"A bit yeah, I wasn't very happy, but I like grappling so I just went in it for fun,” he said,

"I'm more of a stand up fighter, so I was grappling more than I should of (in the second fight).”

The tactic worked.

Nicholls now has the challenge of preparing for the world titles next year in October.

But he's prepared for the hard yards.

"I'm going to do heaps more fights, ramp up training, get more sponsors,” he said.

Nicholls isn't just in the sport for success, he's in it to provide himself with more confidence in himself.

"My sister got me involved,” he said

"She was getting bullied, so dad took us both there, I had a couple of problems at school as well.

"I went to Muay Thai because it was the best option at the time.”

Nicholl's father Zac Winnett said his son was fully committed to the sport, something he hasn't seen with him in any other sport.

"He gets up and runs 4km every morning and then does push ups, sit ups and squat,” he said.

"He does 40 minutes before school and at least an hour and a half after.”

He also travels to Bundaberg, in a one and a half hour trip, three times a week to train with his coach and Vipers Muay Thai owner Shane Bretag.

The Australian champ said Nicholls has the talent to make it far and do well next year.

"He's constantly fighting and doing well,” he said.

"Everything has increased ten fold for him in the last year.

"He's going be looking really sharp.”

Nicholls is currently looking for sponsors and funds to potentially get a mentor to travel with him for next year's titles.

To help head to https://bit.ly/2S19pGV.



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