A SCHOOLGIRL is in fighting form after she was crowned British Judo champion.
St Anthony’s pupil Rebecca Burnett, 14, earned the top spot in her weight category at the British Judo Association’s competition.
Rebecca, of Hylton Lane, Sunderland, has been training in the martial art since the age of seven and is part of the Parks Judo Club.
Dad Alan, a lorry driver, says he couldn’t be more proud of his daughter.
The 44-year-old said: “She works really hard and deserves it. I took her along to Lambton Street Judo Club when she was young to see if she’d like it and she fell in love.
“She now trains three or four times a week and is really dedicated to it. She’ll be going to the European Championships next and hopefully, if she’s lucky enough, she’ll be picked up to go to the Olympics.”
Rebecca isn’t the only one in her family with a sporting nature. She has two younger sisters who could give her a run for her money.
Sophie, 13, and Jessica, eight are both keen athletes and run for Birtley Harriers.
Alan added: “Rebecca and Sophie used to do both athletics and judo and then they both decided to concentrate on one and went their separate ways, and now Jessica has taken up athletics as well.
“Some people think that we must be really pushy with them, but we’ve only ever encouraged the girls to do what they want to do and they really love their sports.
“Sophie is at county level now and Jess is just starting out, so she could be there one day too. I’m very proud of all my girls.”
Rebecca added: “I train a lot so it’s hard to squeeze everything in, especially seeing my friends, but I really enjoy it and I’m really happy that I won the championship.
“I’d love to go to the Olympics one day and hopefully I’d like to do this professionally one day.”