Young boxers who train in Walsden fundraising for trip-of-a-lifetime to represent their country at Thai Boxing World Championships

Haidar AliHaidar Ali
Haidar Ali
Three young boxers who train in Walsden have launched a fundraiser to fulfil their dream of representing Team GB in the Thai Boxing World Championships.

The boxers – the youngest being just 12 years-old – from Oldham and Middleton, have been chosen to represent Great Britain in the World Muay Thai Federation World Championships in Thailand from March 12 to 19.

Mackinlie Rushton-Carroll, 20, Ubaid Ali, 16, and the youngest, Haidar Ali, 12, train with Gorden Estlick at the Thai Boxing school based in Physique Gym in Walsden.

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Haidar, from Coppice, Oldham, is the youngest to compete. He credits Muay Thai for giving him inner strength, discipline and respect.

Mackinlie Rushton-CarrollMackinlie Rushton-Carroll
Mackinlie Rushton-Carroll

“In July 2023, I won the Intercontinental Championship Challenge Belt against a powerful opponent from Ireland,” he said.

"I have learnt a lot from Muay Thai including discipline, respect, inner strength and how to work on my weaknesses and my strengths.

“It has always been my dream to be able to go to Thailand and fight. To be as good as the fighters in Thailand. It is their sport. It also gives GB the opportunity to open more doors for upcoming Muay Thai fighters.”

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Mackinlie, from Rhodes in Middleton, believes that Muay Thai has given him control over his life. Mackinlie was bullied at school for his weight, leading to struggles with his mental health.

Ubaid AliUbaid Ali
Ubaid Ali

He said: “Muay Thai has helped me overcome mental health issues that started at primary school, where I was bullied for my weight.

“Fighting for my country in Thailand, the homeland of the sport, has always been my dream. To finally have that opportunity, I can’t let anything stop me!”

Ubaid, from Coppice in Oldham, said: “The passion I have for Muay Thai is like a person who has a thirst for water. Muay Thai has taught me discipline and respect and to control my emotions.

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“I have been selected to represent Team GB in Thailand in the world finals. It’s every Muay Thai fighter’s dream!”

Ubaid won the North West Title Belt in the Fly-weight category in 2023. He has also competed in events including Novice, Supershowdown, Supershow and the Sandee Open Novice.

Emma Louie, owner of the Physique Gym, said: “The boys have dedicated their lives to Muay Thai. This opportunity is a result of their commitment, dedication, and discipline. I know they will give their all at this competition to represent GB, their local towns, and communities.”

The trio have to raise a minimum of £3,000 to enable them to fly to Thailand and compete in the tournament and are asking for help via their Go Fund Me page and are appealing to local businesses to help support this once-in-a-lifetime dream.

If you would like to donate, visit & or email [email protected].