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Leeds Thai Boxing gym eyes up world stage

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Our funding support puts Golden Team Thai Boxing Gym on the front foot.

A specialist Thai boxing and boxing gym in Hunslet, Leeds, is aiming to produce world champion fighters, with the Southerns Group firmly in its corner.

Golden Team Thai Boxing Gym has undergone a transformative interior refurbishment, thanks to our significant investment. The new facilities, which include recanvassed boxing rings, gym and training equipment, signage, showers, a sauna, a kitchen and a seated TV area will help the gym attract and provide training for top national and international talent.
The gym is run by 28 year old owner, Padraic McDonough, who grew up in Seacroft. A former UK Thai boxing champion, he is now an eminent coach with a national reputation. Padraic took sole ownership of the gym following the sudden death of his coach-turned-business partner, Steve Adams, in 2010. He is determined that the refurbished gym will now be able to produce world-class fighters.

Padraic said: “The investment from Southerns is going to be an absolute game changer for Golden Team. We’ve already got a brilliant group of top fighters, I’ve trained more than 40 champions, and the improvements to the gym will really take us to the next level. People travel from all over the country to train with us and we finally have the world-class facilities to match our ambitions. I have no doubt that in the future, this gym will be full of world boxing and Thai boxing champions.”
Among the gym’s most promising fighters are Mick Learmonth, 22, and Jack Bateson, 23, who are approaching their first professional fights in September, and Archie Boyne, 8, the current Six Nations champion and Northern area champion for his age group. Other notable prospects are Lauren Dwyer and Koby Mcnamara (both junior national champions) and Tyrone Nurse (current British boxing champion).

Andy Kendall-Jones, our CEO, added: “The project at Golden Team is an incredibly exciting one, and we’re delighted to be involved. Padraic is a renowned coach who is nurturing local talent and producing fantastic fighters. We want to help him develop a gym that the community and country can be proud of.”
Andy often trains at the gym and, in addition to funding, he has been quick to offer his business insight to Padraic. “Andy’s become a mentor figure to me,” said Padraic. “At first we were just discussing the possibility of sponsorship for Mick before his professional fight. Andy immediately offered to provide the money and then the conversation developed into an investment in the gym as well. He’s been so hands on and his advice and generosity have enabled me to put my dreams into action.”

As Leeds locals, the two men share a mutual desire to give back to the community. Golden Team has already run free training sessions for children with autism and groups with behavioural problems and there are plans to expand these programmes.
For Southerns, this marks our second investment in local sports enterprises following the sponsorship of Yorkshire Amateurs football club, which was announced in March.

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