Marlene Noel won gold at the WKA Canadian National Championships in Edmonton, Alta. last month. The Muay Thai athlete trains out of Campbell River’s Heart and Soul Muay Thai gym. Photo by Marissa Tiel/Campbell River Mirror

Local Muay Thai fighters gain experience, win hardware at nationals

Noel wins novice fight by unanimous decision in Edmonton

While many Campbell Riverites were enjoying a summer off, two athletes were busy logging training hours at the gym.

All the hard work appears to have paid off for Marlene Noel and Robert Campbell, who represented Heart and Soul Muay Thai at the WKA Canadian National Championships in Edmonton last month.

Noel won her fight by unanimous decision, winning a gold medal, while Campbell finished with a silver medal.

Coach Sandra Bastian was proud of how her athletes performed.

“Robert fought his heart out,” she said of her youngest athlete.

Campbell is only 10 and has been training for just nine months. He competed in the KI Youth B (no head contact) division for boys 10-11 years old and between 83.7 and 92.4 lbs.

Campbell was paired up with an opponent who was two years older, had nine years of training and had been in five ring fights before, said Bastian.

“This was Robert’s first fight ever,” she said. “He did amazing and we are so looking forward to growing with this kid.”

Noel, who had been in the ring before, had been working on staying calm and focused in training. That hard work paid off for her, said Bastian.

“I have a very busy mind, so shutting that off is key for me,” said Noel. “Playing my game. Not jumping in there and all of a sudden playing their game and losing points because you’re fumbling. (Stay) calm; listen to my corner and don’t get too worked up.”

RELATED: Women’s Day fight an ‘amazing’ experience for Campbell River kickboxers

Competing in the Muay Thai Adult Novice 18+ female 125.5-132 lb division, she faced Adia Redekopp of Arashi Do Martial Arts. She won by unanimous decision– a sweet victory after losing a very close split decision earlier this year.

Muay Thai is known as the art of eight limbs, with athletes making use of their fists, elbows, knees and shins.

Noel has only been training in the sport for a couple years. It’s her first combat sport, though she’s been involved with team sports like hockey, baseball and basketball her whole life.

“This is completely new to me and very humbling,” she said.

Noel was back in the gym soon after the fight, keeping up her training. It’s a tight-knit group at Heart and Soul Muay Thai.

RELATED: Former Muay Thai World Champion reflects on a lifelong love of martial arts

“There’s always somebody that’s willing to come and train with me,” said Noel. And if another athlete is training for their own fight, the favour is returned.

Bastian, who shares coaching duties at the gym with Chris Fair, said they expect to see their athletes putting in training hours before even thinking about stepping into the ring for a fight.

While Noel doesn’t have any more fights on the horizon, she is excited at the prospect.

“I can’t wait to step back in the ring again.”

Two other gym members were expected to go to Edmonton, but pulled out ahead of the competition for personal reasons.


@marissatiel
marissa.tiel@campbellrivermirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Marlene Noel won gold at the WKA Canadian National Championships in Edmonton, Alta. last month. The Muay Thai athlete trains out of Campbell River’s Heart and Soul Muay Thai gym. Photo by Marissa Tiel/Campbell River Mirror

From left, coach Chris Fair, nine-year-old Robert Campbell and coach Sandra Bastian pose for a photo at the WKA Canadian National Championships in Edmonton last month. Campbell had his first fight there and coach Bastian says he ‘fought his heart out.’ Campbell brought home a silver medal from the event. Photo by Heart and Soul Muay Thai/Facebook

Marlene Noel poses with her medal after winning her fight at the WKA Canadian National Championships in Edmonton last month. Photo by Heart and Soul Muay Thai/Facebook

Just Posted

The late Michael Gregory, 57, is accused of sexually exploiting six junior high students between 1999 and 2005. (Pixabay)
Former Alberta teacher accused of sexually assaulting students found dead on Quadra Island

Mounties say Michael Gregory’s death has been deemed ‘non-suspicious’

The Downtown Safety Select Committee has floated the idea of removing the glass on the Spirit Square stage structure in the winter. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Proposed Spirit Square glass removal disables sheltered gathering place, homeless advocates say

Downtown Safety Select Committee floats idea of removing glass roof from public facility

John Hart Dam near Campbell River, B.C. BC Hydro photo
John Hart Dam project will move massive amounts of earthfill

The John Hart Dam seismic upgrade will truck more than twice as… Continue reading

Jasmine and Gwen Donaldson are part of the CAT team working to reduce stigma for marginalized groups in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Stigma can be the hardest hurdle to get over for people recovering from addiction

Connection and community key for building back after drug addiction

Dr. Bonnie Henry talk about the next steps in B.C.'s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
456 new COVID-19 cases in B.C., 2 deaths

Since January 2020, 78,278 have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in B.C.

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)
Vaccinating essential workers before seniors in B.C. could save lives: experts

A new study says the switch could also save up to $230 million in provincial health-care costs

The late Michael Gregory, 57, is accused of sexually exploiting six junior high students between 1999 and 2005. (Pixabay)
Former Alberta teacher accused of sexually assaulting students found dead in B.C.

Mounties say Michael Gregory’s death has been deemed ‘non-suspicious’

According to a new poll, a majority of Canadians want to see illicit drugs decriminalized. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Majority of Canadians think it’s high time to decriminalize illicit drugs: poll

More than two-times the B.C. residents know someone who died from an overdose compared to rest of Canada

Photograph By @KAYLAXANDERSON
VIDEO: Lynx grabs lunch in Kamloops

A lynx surprises a group of ducks and picks one off for lunch

(Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. residents can reserve provincial camp sites starting March 8

B.C. residents get priority access to camping reservations in province

Two women were arrested in Nanaimo for refusing to wear masks and causing disturbance on a BC Ferries vessel. (File photo)
B.C. ferry passengers arrested and fined for disturbance, refusing to wear masks

Police said woman threatened their pensions in Feb. 21 incident aboard Nanaimo-bound boat

Most Read