A nine-year-old champion kickboxer from Horwich is celebrating after battling his way to a local championship title thanks to the help of a Bolton Specsavers store.
Talented young fighter and Horwich Kickboxing Club member Leon Moss recently visited the Middlebrook Retail Park store to see if he could be fitted with contact lenses in order to help him see more clearly in the ring, where he cannot wear his glasses.
Due to his high prescription, optometrist Firdaus Suleman and trainee dispensing optician Mat Averall were more than happy to help. They checked Leon’s eyes and taught the young fighter and his family how to use the lenses.
Leon's a champion
The extra preparation clearly paid off as a week later Leon visited the store to thank Specsavers staff, proudly wearing his Inter Club Championship winner’s belt.
Kevin Juste, store manager says: ‘It's fairly rare to fit children who are so young with contact lenses but with an upcoming kickboxing tournament and such a high prescription, we really wanted to help.
‘After a consultation with Leon and his family and a thorough assessment we were pleased to be able to help Leon and improve his enjoyment of his sport but he did all the hard work in the ring!
‘Leon said he could see so much better during the fight and his family could see a difference watching the tournament.
‘Hopefully it's given him some extra confidence and will help him win further fights.’
Transforming Leon's confidence
Leon’s grandmother, Christine Evans, says the lenses have done wonders for her grandson’s confidence.
Christine says: ‘Leon absolutely loves kickboxing but as soon as he stepped in to the ring for the first time without his glasses he said, “Nana I can’t do this properly”. We had tried everything including prescription swimming goggles but it just wasn’t practical and was really affecting Leon’s confidence.
‘Leon has been going to Specsavers since he was three years old so when he went in to have his eyes tested it was his idea to ask about contact lenses. The Specsavers team were absolutely wonderful with him and thanks to their help he’s a champion.
‘Leon only wears the lenses for sport but the result has been incredible. He’s enjoying every minute in the ring and is an absolute star. We’re already running out of space for all his trophies.’