Sports

Mark lines up world title fight

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Mark lines up world title fight thumbnailMark Kerr is in training for his world title fight.

BALLYGAWLEY'S Mark Kerr is already a professional British kickboxing champion but he will soon have a shot at world glory.

The 26-year-old tree surgeon will travel to Wishaw in Scotland on 21st April to fight against Ryan Lyle for the WKA World Title.

It is the latest and by far the most significant bout for Kerr, who trains at DK2 Fitness Gym in Killyman.

He secured his British title by beating the reigning champion Stuart Roper on his home patch over seven rounds on a split decision.

This impressive victory drew many plaudits with Mark having very little time to prepare for the bout.

Now he has the opportunity to become the World Champion.

His coach, Stuart Kirk has stated his pride at seeing his fighter, who has been under his tutelage for several years, earn this shot.

"It's absolutely unbelievable," Stuart told the Courier.

"Mark came to me and after a few sessions it was clear to see he had something special.

"He has been at it for six years now and has had 30 fights throughout his career with only two draws and two losses.

"He became the best in Northern Ireland, winning the national kickboxing title, he then won the British title, then the European one and after that success he made the decision to go pro.

"Now he is a professional British champion and he now has the opportunity to be recognised as the best in the World.

"This is the biggest kickboxing occasion in the world. Mark has great movement, he can hit really hard and he can take a punch, he is a great all round kick-boxer.

"Mark will be in training now for nine weeks, every day for at least an hour and a half, this is a real opportunity for the Mark to make history and I really believe he can do it.

"This is the biggest achievement ever for both me and Mark in kickboxing."

Speaking about the fight Mark admits the ink is still drying on the paperwork that has secured the fight.

"It will be 12 two minute rounds and I am really looking forward to it. I don't know much about my opponent (Ryan Lyle) yet but I am sure we will be looking at his strengths and weaknesses in detail in training and by the time I step into the ring on 21st April I will know a lot more about him I am sure."

Mark has been fighting for six years now and having just returned to training is keen to taste victory again.

"I was back in training for the first time in a while last week," he said. "It was good to get back to it. I had a couple of weeks off but to get back into the gym was a great feeling.

"I will be training right up to one week before the fight and am raring to go already.

"I am trying to get as much sponsorship as I can and would like to encourage anyone who would be interested in sponsoring me to get in touch.

"This is my first world title fight and I'm confident it will be the first of many."

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