Shyla’s fighting fit

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She might only be eight years old, but you definitely don’t want to mess with Queenstowner Shyla Mulholland.

The primary schooler’s recently returned from Auckland after claiming the top spot in her division at the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu tournament.

It’s her second gold in the past few months, making her undefeated in national comps.

She says it’s taken “a lot of hard work” and effort.

“It was really good.”

She’s been training at Carlson Gracie Jiu Jitsu in Frankton for about two years.

As well as her normal training sessions three times a week, she also does extra classes in the weekend with her training partner, Sam Vining, 11.

She’s now training hard to earn a place at the world champs in California next October.

The next big national tournament will be in April in Auckland, and there’s also the prospect of competing across the ditch next year.

Dad Marcus Mulholland says self-defence and confidence were the main reasons he wanted Shyla to take up the sport.

“She happened to be really good at it.

“Shyla has always been very competitive and eager to compete in tournaments.”

The proud dad’s “over the moon” with Shyla’s national success.

The passion for jiu jitsu runs in the family, with younger brother Kobe, 4, recently starting training as well.

Carlson Gracie Jiu Jitsu also has a big tournament coming up.

The King of the South comp will be held at the Events Centre on November 17.

daisy.hudson@scene.co.nz