Thrive MMA Future Champions Caleb Traish and Samuel Hazel attended the ISKA Western Open Tournament in Bathurst on Sunday, February 23.
(min cost $8)
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Caleb is a Lithgow High School student who is a school prefect and also a joint recipient of 2019 Dr Judy White Memorial Scholarship.
He is well known for his performances in the Lithgow High School and Lithgow Musical Society musicals since 2015 having performed in over 10 musicals most recently he played Danny Zuko in last year's production of Grease.
Unknown to many, Caleb has also been training in martial arts since the age of five and was awarded his black belt in 2018.
He has also been running the Future Champions program at Thrive MMA inside the Club Revive Complex.
He runs four childrens classes per week with the assistance of his father Paul Traish Thrive MMA Head Coach.
"The program is not just about learning martial arts, it's about educating children in healthy lifestyle choices and we have a huge focus on behaviour, we encourage being respectful, responsible and reliable, these are what make a champion," Caleb said.
Caleb competed in three events, two of which he had to compete against adults. His first event was kickboxing against a black belt from Bathurst.
He executed some great movement and landed several combinations winning by a referee stoppage, according to proud dad and Thrive MMA Future Champions coach Paul.
In his second bout Caleb fought well and lost by close decision earning himself a bronze medal.
He had two wrestling divisions and had a total of five matches, he was also was matched against either adults or larger opponents due to the divisions.
He won three of these matches including the submission of one of Orange Pollets Martial Arts coaches with a triangle choke and one of the fasted submissions of the day locking in an armbar just 30 seconds into the match.
He received silver and bronze medals for these divisions.
Sam Hazel also competed and was awarded the 2019 Future Champion of the year award.
He would often train five or more times a week and always tried his hardest.
Sam was awarded his green belt at the end of 2019 due to his constant display of great behaviour, hard work and excellent sportsmanship.
The tournament was his first ever event and again due to divisions he was moved into a class with larger opponents.
He fought courageously and was lucky enough to come away with a bronze medal in the nogi Brazilian Jiu Jitsu division.
Sam said he was super keen for the next event at the end of March and has inspired more of Future Champion students to get involved.
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