Spartan kickboxer Jake proves class in Milan victory

Jake Thirlaway with IKF English title belt and partner and Spartan Fighting Arts Academy team-mate Becca Garside

Jake Thirlaway with IKF English title belt and partner and Spartan Fighting Arts Academy team-mate Becca Garside

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Jake Thirlaway shows off his IKF English championship belt, alongside Spartan team-mate and partner Becca Garside

The IKF English champion, from Washington, took on Italian Nicola Cirigliano under full contact kickboxing rules, and it was clear from the opening round that the Wearsider had a measurable edge over his opponent.

The 24-year-old had Cirigliano down a number of times, but the tough Italian battled hard until the end, doing some of his best work in the final round. But it was not enough and Thirlaway won with a unanimous points decision to delight watching chief instructor Paul Grieves.

On the same night, 22-year-old Becca Garside, from Hastings Hill, took on giant kickboxer Silvia Scampini in a K1 rules match.

Despite badly injuring her foot in the opening round, Becca, team-mate and partner of Thirlaway, battled hard for the draw against the solid Italian fighter.