A kickboxer from South Tyneside who narrowly missed out on a world title in America has set his sights on tackling more high-profile matches.
Nathan McCarthy says his defeat by 39-year-old American Amer Abdullah in New York has given him a taste of the direction he wants his fight career to take.
The 23-year-old said: “The fight in America was the biggest I’ve ever competed in and, even though I lost, it was a brilliant experience.
“It was a completely different atmosphere, for one I only had nine people shouting for me. I still feel I done enough to win that fight, but it just didn’t go my way in the end.
“But experiencing what I did, it has made me more determined and made me want that world title more than ever.
“It was a great opportunity for me and it would great for to be able to have a re-match here in the North East, and have another chance at that title.”
Experiencing what I did, it has made me more determined and made me want that world title more than ever.Nathan McCarthy
The kickboxer, a student at the Kuei-Ling Kickboxing Club in Maxwell Street, South Shields, since the age of seven, already has a number of titles to his name including the WK European, ICO British, WK British, WUMA English and WKU World Champion.
He has also competed throughout Europe and is currently in training to take part in one of the world’s biggest kickboxing tournaments to date - The Irish Open in March.
Coach Steve East said: “The tournament is one of top tournaments in the world with 47 countries competing and 4,500 competitors.
“Nathan is going from strength to strength and while he may have lost the fight in America, his talent didn’t go unnoticed.
“We would love to have a rematch but we will have to wait and see it will be agreed.”
Kuei-Ling Kickboxing Club is based at 40 Maxwell Street, South Shields.
For more information on the club and sessions for both adults and children visit 07946 389 945.