This 9-year-old is world's youngest cage fighter
Child prodigies never fail to surprise us. Like this UK-based 9-year-old boy, who is believed to be the world's youngest cage fighter. Alfie Williams won his first fight in just 22 seconds last June and since then has emerged as a winner in 15 out of 20 fights. His dream is to become a Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) champion like Connor McGregor. Here's more.
According to Alfie's father, Chris Williams, a construction worker, Staffordshire-based Alfie had always been a competitive child and started with kickboxing at the tender age of four. When he was six, he moved to taekwondo and in April 2018, he started training at Gladiator MMA Gym in Stroke-on-Trent. The gym is currently run by Alfie's mentor, trainer and former MMA champion, Ross Pointon.
Ross, 34, told media that Alfie came to him last year and has now become more outgoing, brave, and is extremely passionate about the sport. "I've so much respect for him and all the children who walk toward that cage. I call him 'big man' because it takes so much courage. I know grown men wouldn't dare to do what Alfie does," he said.
Alfie comes to the gym after school for five days a week, and spends two hours there. "He's become more focused and confident. We just don't teach him how to fight, but also life-skills," Ross said. Ross added that he also tells Alfie and other children about the mistakes he made, as "This is a sport that can totally turn people's lives around."
Meanwhile, Chris talked about how the sport changed his son's behavior. According to him, the 4-feet 3-inches tall Alfie used to be a loudmouth but is now a focused, disciplined and respectful young man. "He hates bullying and always stands up for his mates. If it came to it he could give a good hit and take a good hit," the proud father said.
"He (Alfie) can get me in a headlock very easily, but the sport teaches him respect, so I know he'd only do that as a last resort," Chris said. He also mentioned that his son frequently goes up against opponents who are much older and larger than him. "It can be quite time consuming but he loves it," he said.
Alfie's father admitted that he does get nervous seeing his son inside the ring but says "it is enjoyable and always amazing to see him once he has won medals". "At the end of the day it is not about me, it is about him. It's what he wants from life so I'll help him all the way," Chris wrapped up.