Mum's celery soup boosts St Helens Karate girl's performances

St Helens Star: Nicole with her latest awards. Nicole with her latest awards.

LITTLE Miss Dynamite Nicole Donoghue has her sights set on blowing away the opposition for quite a few years to come.

Karate exponent Nicole flew the flag high for St Helens when she won gold as part of the four strong England Juniors Kumite team that came first in the European Championships in Porto, Portugal.

She’s made an impressive climb up the ladder of success since she started as a nine year-old at St Helens Karate based at Sutton Leisure Centre.

This autumn the Team England member from New Bold won gold and bronze medals at the World Shotokan Karate Championships when she produced an impressive performance to win eight of her 11 fights at Liverpool.

Just weeks after her 18th birthday Nicole was hauling in the medals again as part of the England Juniors team of 18-20 year-olds.

Speaking to the Star this week Nicole revealed her appetite for life, her strong work ethic and her ambitions which started off when a friend decided to take up the sport.

“I was nine and a friend said she wanted to go to the club so I went along with her but a couple of weeks later she left. My mum said I was at it and told me to stick at it and I did,” said Nicole who now teaches her mum who is ready for green belt grading.

“I never had a temporary grade I went from white straight to red and got my black belt at 13 and my second Dan at 16.”

One of her biggest supporters is her grandad, retired haulier Edwin Garton, who can feel justifiably proud of Nicole’s progress.

The former Sutton High pupil is studying sports science at St Helens College but crams an awful lot into her average week.

She trains on Tuesdays and Thursdays at St Helens Karate but before she starts she puts her own team of Little Tigers through their paces, all aged between four and eight.

“They are very good, we’ve definitely got some future stars,” she said enthusiastically.

Away from training and studying she works as an Avon distributor and also is involved in hospitality work at Saints and assists the St Helens Star’s promotions team.

Saints fan Nicole gets to run the rule over the lads from Langtree Park since she started on a sports massage course which involves doing massage on the players at their Cowley training facility.

“I’d eventually like to do nutrition, personal training and fitness instruction and perhaps have my own club,” said the ambitious teenager.

“I’m really grateful for the work my sensei St Helens fireman Ian Roberts has put in with me since I took up the sport. He’s been great. He’s old school, but it works and patience has paid off.”

Her favourite dish, mum’s home made celery soup obviously hasn’t done any harm either nor the taste for rock and country music she has inherited from her grandad. Keep rockin’ ‘em Nicole!

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