Jamie’s kick boxing career is blooming lovely
KICK-boxing is one of the most dangerous and physically demanding sports in the world.
Horncastle’s Jamie Key would readily testify to that.
There’s hardly a bone in his body he hasn’t broken in his quest to become the undisputed world champion.
Fighters are regularly left battered, bruised and bloodied...and that’s often just the winners!
With all that in mind, it’s something of a surprise to learn Jamie’s day job involves looking after tender young plants at Crowders Garden Centre.
“I enjoy it,” said the 23-year-old who will fly out to Canada in October to fight for the world title.
“Some people are surprised when I tell them what I do but why not? It is interesting and I really enjoy it. Crowders are fantastic people to work for.”
The Garden Centre has certainly supported Jamie in his meteoric rise up the international rankings.
They regularly give him time off to train and attend major competitions while owner, Robert Crowder, is paying for the trip to Canada.
Jamie added: “They have been brilliant and without their help, it would have been a real struggle.
“Kick boxing doesn’t always have the best of images but that is unfair. It’s a great sport. Ir’s getting more and more popular and it deserves a lot more backing.”
Jamie took up kick-booxing at the age of 11. He admitted: “At first, it was something to do, something to keep me off the streets.
“I suppose I was a bit of a ‘bad boy’ and to be honest, it (kick boxing) has helped transform my life. It’s definitely kept me on the straight and narrow.”
Jamie, a former pupil at Banovallum School, was soon winning county and regional tournaments. He is ranked number two in Great Britain and number four in Europe.
He recently battled through to the final of the European Championships where he was beaten by the world’s top ranked fighter.
Jamie explained: “It was a really close. It could have gone either way and I was gutted when he won.
“These things happen. It often comes down to one small thing, one little mistake. If anything, it just makes you more determined.”
Jamie has eight weeks to prepare for his world title bid in Montreal. He already trains four times a week but will be stepping up his efforts.
Jamie uses the facilities at a Horncastle school and Louth’s Meridian Leisure Centre. He is also a member of the England squad and his long-time coach, Paul Reid, is from Horncastle.
Jamie said: “Paul is a massive influence. He’s always there for me. I’ve had a lot of other support locally. Houlden’s helped with sponsorship for the British Championships. I owe them a big thank-you.”
He recently returned from a tournament in Ireland where he gave a whole new meaning to the phrase ‘fighting through the pain barrier’ after reaching the final - with FOUR broken bones in his foot!
Long-term, he would love to see kick-boxing accepted as an Olympic Sport but first, he is focussed on that world title.
He added: “It’s going to be tough but I wouldn’t bother going if I didn’t think I stood a good chance.”
Given Jamie’s impressive record, it would be a brave - or foolish - man who argues with him!
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Weather for Horncastle
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 5 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 7 C to 18 C
Wind Speed: 13 mph
Wind direction: North west