A 14-year-old Thai boxing champion from Little Hulton in Salford has launched an appeal to raise enough funds to represent his country at the World Championships in Thailand.
Dylan Furness has been competing since the age of 7 and along with being one of the most decorated junior Thai boxers in the UK, he is also the country’s best rated junior.
Since he was at primary school Dylan has fought his way to a staggering 30 titles including the English, British, European and Worlds under six different boxing associations.
He’s committed to a gruelling training regime under chief instructor and coach Geoff Downes at the Peel Thai Boxing Camp on Manchester Road West in Little Hulton.
But a funding shortage at Sport England means the young scrapper needs the community’s help to raise £1,500 to make it to the Royal World Cup some 6,000 miles away on the other side of the world.
2000 athletes from 102 countries across the globe will descend on the Thai capital city of Bangkok from 13-23 August for the International Federation of Muaythai Amateur Championships.
Dad Kiernan, 44, told SalfordOnline.com: “Dylan became interested in Thai Boxing purely by accident, we were looking for a local cub group for him to join and we saw the poster for Peel Thai Boxing Club and, well, that was it.
“At first we thought it would be just another hobby for him but he stuck to it and has won numerous titles.
“I shall be going over to Thailand to cheer him along, normally I am his corner man but this event is a World Championship one, so I am not allowed.
“I am really proud of Dylan and what he achieved and I think he can go all the way in this sport, especially with the dedication he has shown.”
His Peel Thai Boxing compatriot, 15-year-old Stuart Stabler, has already raised enough to secure his plane ticket to Thailand so Dylan needs all the help he can get.
Geoff Downes, himself a former British Thai boxing champion, said: “Stuart’s a very technical fighter while Dylan has great power and speed.
“They’re both multiple World Junior Champions, having beaten the best young fighters in Russia, Italy, France and America over the past two years.
“I’m looking forward to them representing the club on the international stage.”
Dylan added: “Being selected to represent Team England at the World Championships is an amazing opportunity and something that I have worked very hard for.
“Thank you to everybody for their support and donations, please keep them coming! I hope to do my family, the community and our country proud out in Thailand.”
To help Dylan realise his dreams please donate on his GoFundMe page here