Wright on top of the world
JESSE Wright is not someone to mess with.
And the 20-year-old member of the Hervey Bay Combined Martial Arts Club has the titles to prove it.
He's spent the year kicking some serious butt - literally.
Trained by former champion sensei David Di Giovanni, Wright has made a huge impact during his first year of competitive fighting.
Winning world, Australian and Queensland titles is testament to that.
He won the world point sparring title during the International Sport Karate Association World Cup in Sydney before backing up that success by winning the Australian freestyle sparring title at the nationals.
Wright had already won the Queensland point sparring title earlier in the year.
To cap off a memorable year, Wright was selected for the Australian team to contest Japan Martial Arts Championships next year and he also earned the chance to fight in the USA International Sport Karate Association Martial Arts Open.
Not a bad effort when you consider this is his debut year on the national and international circuit.
Despite his impressive year, Wright is not sitting back and resting on his laurels - far from it.
He's training as hard now, if not harder.
"You don't stay a champion if you are not prepared to work like one," said Wright, who trains up to six days a week.
"You have to be dedicated if you want to succeed in this sport.
"It's tough and there is no room for complacency."
His coach agreed.
"Jesse is my most dedicated student and he works so hard," Di Giovanni said.
"He loves what he does with such a passion and he gets the rewards for his commitment.
"He's a real powerhouse - just look at his record."