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Performing to the Maximum

PUBLISHED: 12:52 03 December 2008 | UPDATED: 16:09 23 July 2010

Max Woollard in action

Max Woollard in action

By Ian Cooper YOUNG London champion Max Woollard has beaten off the best competition the capital has to offer, and has set his sights on becoming Britain s number one. Fresh from winning the London Regional Championships, the 13-year-old from Willesden Gr

By Ian Cooper

YOUNG London champion Max Woollard has beaten off the best competition the capital has to offer, and has set his sights on becoming Britain's number one.

Fresh from winning the London Regional Championships, the 13-year-old from Willesden Green now aims to put opponents to the sword both at home and abroad in an action-packed 2009.

Next up are the British Youth Championships in Wolverhampton in January, where the top four performers will be selected to represent Great Britain, and Max is eager for the step up.

"This year has been great because I've managed to win a medal in every competition I've been in," he said.

"It would mean a lot for me to represent Great Britain, but really it's all about having fun and enjoying it."

February will see Max, who already represents England, competing in his first ever international tournament in Paris, and he travels to Poland the following month.

The talented teen already sits top of the Leon Paul Junior Series, the league which throws together fencers from all over the country, and is preparing to progress to the under-15s in January.

A tough schedule means the youngster competes most weekends, and trains four nights a week at Salle Paul Fencing Club in Camden and Fighting Fit Fencing Club in Holloway Road, with each demanding session lasting around two and a half hours.

"It's a really good sport to get into because you don't always need to be in a team, you can just go to your local club and fence with whoever is there," said Max.

Jim Philbin, Salle Paul Fencing Club manager, said: "Max has got tremendous potential, he's one of our younger players but has already made his mark at a young age.

"It used to be the perception that fencing was very much a public school sport, but that's no longer the case.

"Many of the country's top fencers begin at clubs like ours now, it's much more wide open, and a great sport to get into.

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