The martialarts-online.co.uk team have caught up with rising kickboxing star Cory Cook. He's already part of Team Top Ten UK and has won every Junior honour the sport has to offer. More recently, he's also taken titles in the senior division, something he'll be hoping to achieve more of this year and beyond.
We talk about his martial arts influences, toughest competitor, and just who he thinks is the number one fighter in the UK right now..
MAO- Hi Cory, thanks for chatting with us. Firstly, we'd like to know when and why you started martial arts?
CC - It's my pleasure! I started martial arts around the age of 5 - through my sister. But I didn't seriously begin competing until I had been training 4 years and was around 9 years old.
MAO - Can you enlighten our readers on your martial arts journey so far?
CC - I have always absolutely loved Kickboxing. I’ve managed to come through and win every WAKO European event for the past three years, including some of the toughest tournaments in the world, such as the Austrian Classics and Irish Open.
I am currently a member of Team Bristol and have been a sponsored athlete (TOP TEN) for the past 4 years. It's really special being part of a team, and to get support from a well known fighting brand is also really helpful to me and my journey.
MAO - There have been some great fighters out of Team Bristol and also Team Top Ten. Who would you say has been most influential for you and your fighting style?
CC - I’m always willing to learn. This is why I think my fighting style isn't comprised of just one fighter, but more like several different fighters who all bring something different to the table.
I like watching certain techniques that I can practice or sometimes mimic in order to adapt it to my own style.
Growing up and still now my favourite fighter is David Colla. I find myself really entertained when watching him fight, I often try to use techniques like his.
MAO - You've achieved a lot of success in a relatively short amount of time, which title are you most proud of?
CC - My greatest achievement has to be winning the double gold at the WAKO European Kickboxing Championships. Taking first place in both the Points Fighting and Kick Light divisions.
MAO - And in your career so far, who has been your toughest competitor?
CC - It has to be Roman Brundl (2019 Irish Open Grand Champion). He is simply another class of fighter. I found it so hard to have any time to rest or any thinking time during the fight.
His legs are just relentless.
MAO - In the UK, who do you think is the number one fighter?
CC - I would have to say Elijah Everill, he really taken it to another level for kickboxing in the UK.
Grace Chandler also has to be mentioned though, she’s on FIRE at the moment!
MAO - Generally speaking, 'Points Fighting' is growing in popularity across the world, why do you think this is?
CC - A certain level of professionalism is being introduced to kickboxing and I think people want to experience that.
The use of social media also helps publicise the sport and various individuals' achievement which I think helps motivate people, and encourage them to try it out.
MAO - Many points fighters have transitioned into Boxing or MMA for more individual exposure, is this something you have thought about?
CC - Around two years ago I was selected for the GB Taekwondo Development team, where there is a clear pathway to competing in the Olympics.
I felt that it was a real achievement for me to be chosen and it was something I really wanted to do. Due to the timing I made the decision to leave in the end. Unfortunately it was during the same period as my GCSE’s which I felt needed to be my focus.
My opinion is definitely that these kind of sports do give greater exposure for their athletes.
MAO - Finally, what does the future of Cory Cook in Kickboxing look like?
CC - Put simply, my current goal is to be successful in the sport.
One day, I want to be able dominate all of my sections, and go on to win Grand Champion titles at various tournaments throughout the world.
I'd definitely like to compete more in America, perhaps finding an American team that I could fight with. For now, I love exactly what I’m doing.