Computer coder by day and judo champ by night, White Rock’s Matthew Molski, 14, has returned from the BC Winter Games after sweeping his opponents.
Molski, weighing in at 68kg, won gold in the U16 73kg category in Fort St. John’s and carried on to take silver in the team competition.
“In team fights, they boosted my weight to fight the (heavier) guys because there was no more people my weight,” he said, adding that he battled against a competitor who weighed 115kg.
It’s quite an accomplishment for the Elgin Park Secondary student, who took up the sport only three years ago.
“I came up quite intimidated,” Molski said when asked how he first got involved in the sport.
“I felt like I had a little bit of a lack of confidence. I was actually scared when I first joined judo. I was very nervous, I didn’t know what to expect. And then I started doing more and more classes. I slowly started setting goals to beat others in the club and got better.”
In his first three years in the sport, Molski has competed in about 20 competitions. Earlier this year, he won the U16 73kg category in the 2020 Youth Provincial Championships.
He said he spends at least four-to-five days per week in the White Rock Judo Club, located at 1534 Foster St.
Richard Clemas, one of Molski’s instructors at the club, described how Molski quickly progressed in the sport.
“From an awkward 12-year-old kid going right up to almost 15 now, he’s just been growing,” Clemas said. “He is very skilled. He’s been going up in increments each year. First little while he didn’t do so good, but in the last six months I’d say he’s probably put it all together.”
The commitment to the sport has started to pay off, Clemas indicated.
“He’s very, very intelligent. He does coding for computers and he’s doing judo four nights a week, which is astounding. Most people only take it one or two nights a week. He’s very good, he’s really moving along.”
Molski now has his eyes set on qualifying for nationals.
“I’m very close to getting there,” he said, adding that the qualification depends on the outcome of a tournament in Richmond on March 13 and a judo camp in Canmore.
“Then after that, it would be nationals.”
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