Sporting success has come as a complete surprise to Donington fighter Megan Hartfil-Allgood (15) who is the new English taekwondo champion.
The Spalding High School student won gold in the cadet girls black belt middleweight division at the TAGB (Taekwondo Association of Great Britain) English Championships in Worcester on the same weekend as Megan’s schoolmates started their Easter holidays.
Megan now has her sights set on the World Championships in Birmingham this July after defying her status as one of the lightest fighters in her category to win her first national title.
“I didn’t expect to get anywhere, but I was training with the England squad and my instructor was pushing me more,” Megan said.
“This was my first time fighting at middleweight after moving up to the cadets and I’m not a very aggressive fighter.
“But I can move out of the way (of kicks and punches) quite easily and block things out around me.”
‘It was more of a hobby to start with but I carried on because I wanted to see what it was all about’Megan Hartfil-Allgood (15) of Donington, TAGB cadet girls black belt middleweight English taekwondo champion
Megan took up the sport seven years ago and became a black belt about five years later, winning a silver medal in team sparring at last year’s English Championships.
“I started taekwondo with a few of my cousins but when they decided not to go anymore, I carried on because I just wanted to see what it was all about,” Megan said.
“It was more of a hobby to start with, but my instructor asked me if I’d done it before because she could see that I might be good after having my first few lessons.”
Michelle Hartfil-Allgood, Megan’s mum, added: “She’s won medals at TAGB Midlands Championships before but never had anything at national level until now.
“It’s hard to watch Megan knowing she may well get hurt, but she loves it and we were just very, very proud of her when she took the gold.”