Elijah Everill is already one of the most successful British martial artists ever. His record of World, European and British Championships, along with countless international Grand Championship wins is enviable by anyone's standards.
He recently cemented his claim to number one status by taking an incredible victory in the Grand Champion category of the acclaimed Irish Open. After defeating his allstars team mate, point fighting legend Jack Felton, Elijah became visibly emotional and dropped to his knees.
"It’s been a dream of mine ever since I first attended the Irish open back in 2008 as a 9 year old boy." He told martialarts-online.co.uk.
"I remember watching some of the legends of our sport battle it out for the ultimate prize and it really inspired me.
"I knew that was the level I wanted and needed to get to. Now, to think that I’ve actually made this dream become a reality, is so surreal.
"Of course, I am tremendously happy that I have managed to obtain the greatest title there is to win, but I also understand that champions come and go, but legends last forever.
"To be considered a legend, I need more than just one title, I am happy but I am also never satisfied."
Being the title he's always dreamed of getting his hands on, Elijah admits it was his most difficult victory so far.
"It’s a serious division with an immense amount of talent. Just look at the numbers,100 people entered, and if you take a look at the names you will find the very best from all over Europe, North America, Central America and South America.
"That’s why the Irish Open is so unique. You can go to different competitions around the world and fight the best of each continent, but to have everyone from all over the world, across all associations at one single event, is what makes the Irish open truly special. This was definitely the hardest ever to win."
It's taken a lifetime of dedication to get to where he is and Elijah is thankful for a support network that's helped him to achieve his dream. He continued:
"My parents put in so much time and effort for me, they travelled all over the country and all over the world so that I could train, learn and improve myself.
"They have been so supportive throughout my whole martial arts journey and there is no way that without that support, I would be anywhere near close to the level I’m at now. This is their title as much as it is mine."
As the current undisputed Points Fighting king, Elijah is not going to contemplate resting on his laurels.
"I will continue to work harder than everybody else and I will continue to win as much as I possibly can.
"My goal is to reach a level where it’s not even a discussion about whether I’m the best or not, I want it to be a matter of fact, the same way that the sky is blue or grass is green.
"There are still a lot of things I want to achieve in the sport, I have my eyes set on the World Combat Games next year as well as a few competitions in the US that I still need to win.
"I don’t want to leave anything behind in the sport. Once I’ve accomplished absolutely everything, I will look to continue my journey in other areas, but there’s a lot of work to do."
With plenty of talent around looking to usurp his position atop the podium, Elijah welcomes the challenge.
"If there isn’t a target on my back then I’m not doing my job properly.
"Having people who want to beat you and surpass you is what pushes you to become better, it stops you from catching the complacency disease so I’m always grateful to my rival competitors for keeping me healthy.
"My job is to make that target on my back so far in the distance that it’s not even visible, never mind attainable. So, I will continue to stay hungry and keep improving my skills in order to do that."
As for defending his recently gained honours, Elijah isn't planning on giving it up any time soon.
"I will be back next year to defend my title of course, and hopefully for more many years after that as well.
"I know Raymond [Daniels] has 10 titles, so I’ve got a lot of work to do."
Image Source EMS Photos UK