MARLBOROUGH teenager Alex Wiggins claimed a silver medal at the British Taekwondo Championships earlier this month.

The 17-year-old, who is currently studying for his A Levels at St John’s Marlborough, provided something of a surprise in the Middle Weight Adult division by reaching the final.

Wiggins had initially entered the cadets’ 15-17-year-old category, but with insufficient numbers in that class he was asked to move up.

Wiggins had to spar against older, heavier, and more experienced students in a knock-out format, but the teenager took it all in his stride as he won through the initial bouts to earn a place in the final.

Although he fell agonisingly short of a memorable victory, Wiggins’ achievement was all the more remarkable given it was his first competitive sparring event.

Sparring training in the club sessions had not been possible due to covid restrictions until recently.

Nevertheless Wiggins’ instructor worked hard with him to develop his skills by sparring against black belt adults within the club.

In March 2020, the Marlborough student was entered into the English Championships, but the competition was cancelled because of Covid 19 restrictions.

Wiggins was therefore forced to wait until the British Championships came around at the Skydome in Coventry to make his competitive bow.

Following the competition Alex said: “I enjoyed the challenge and have learned a lot from the experience.

“I am proud of my achievement and hope to reach black belt next year as well as challenge myself to more competitions.”

The teenager’s instructor, Teresa Kelly, said: “Alex has done himself proud in representing Marlborough Taekwondo Club at the British Championships and earned his well-deserved trophy.”

Wiggins was one of four Marlborough Taekwondo students who travelled to Coventry to take part at various events at the British Championships.

They all did themselves proud and enjoyed the competition, bringing back a wealth of experience and pride in their efforts.