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I was born with one hand to Prem star dad – now I'm making my own way in MMA


THE SON of an ex-Premier League star is now using his feet to do the talking in the ring – despite having one arm shorter than the other.

The 30-year-old Jake Peacock seemed destined for sporting stardom from the day he was born.

Jake Peacock will make his One Championship debut on Friday


Jake Peacock will make his One Championship debut on FridayCredit: Bennie Palmore and Lion Fight
He was born with one arm shorter than the other and his dad is an ex-Prem star


He was born with one arm shorter than the other and his dad is an ex-Prem starCredit: KO MEDIA

His grandfather, Keith Peacock, achieved legendary status as a footballer for Charlton Athletic.

He made over 500 appearances for the Addicks before his boy, Jake’s father, followed in his footsteps.

Former forward Gavin Peacock played for the likes of Newcastle and Chelsea in the 1990s before becoming a pastor in Canada following his retirement.

But unfortunately for Jake an ultrasound failed to spot a thread of the amniotic sac inside mum Amanda had come loose and wrapped around his right limb while she was pregnant.

That prevented it from growing completely in a 10,000-1 stroke of bad luck.

However, the limb-different striker who used to be a social worker has defied all of those odds to become a star in his own right in the world of Muay Thai and kickboxing.

He makes his ONE Championship debut at ONE Friday Fights 58 against Kohei Shinjo on Friday after winning the Road to ONE: Canada tournament.

And he has spoken about using this opportunity on the global stage to inspire others across the globe.


He told Sky Sports: “I hope people will be inspired by that. There might be some scepticism and doubt, but when they see my abilities and what I’ve been able to do, hopefully that’s a motivator and inspiration.”

Discussing meeting his trainer, Steve Groom, for the very first time at the gym, he said: “He didn’t even make a deal about it.

Forgotten ex-Premier League ace who once cost £13.5m scores hat-trick on debut including backheel after shock transfer

“Just like my parents, they just let me get on with stuff and live my life and let me figure it out and Steve was the same.

“Both my parents, Steve, my whole family really have been really influential in how I’ve developed.

“There has been no ceiling over my head as far as heights that I can reach so I’m very grateful for those people that surrounded me.”

Naturally, with such a rich family history in sport, Jake admits that there is an extra pressure to succeed.

However, he insists that it is something he was “born” to do.

He added: “Not at all… My dad kicked balls for a living and I kick people’s heads.

“My grandad too, he played over 500 games for Charlton Athletic so it’s in the blood.

“If anything, it just motivates me more and gives me a real sense of feeling like I belong in professional sport at the highest level.

“My grandad did it, my dad did it and now I’m doing it, so I was born for it.”

Gavin Peacock became a preacher and pastor after retiring from football


Gavin Peacock became a preacher and pastor after retiring from footballCredit: Phil Shephard-Lewis – The Times

Speaking previously to Sun Sport about entwining Christianity’s virtues of charity and compassion and his tough-love approach in bringing up Jake, his father Gavin explained: “Jake was the first baby in our family for 20-odd years and he came out a fighter.

“We needed forceps and the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck twice and then I saw that half of his arm was missing, which took me from the highest high to the ground moving beneath me.

“We decided to never mollycoddle our children, because life is full of hardships and suffering and if you shield your child from that then they will crumble at their first experience of it away from your protection.

“We let Jake get on with things and he learned everything his own way.

“One day I watched him fight a boy who was bigger and better than him, Jake knew he was going to get a pasting but he never stopped trying.

“I told him on the way home that that fight had shown me more about his courage and commitment than any of his previous victories and I knew then he would be OK.”

Gavin added: “Jake wants people to talk about him as a really good fighter, not ‘the fighter with one hand.’ But the fact is that he has one hand and that does make it even more amazing.

“I know Jake has inspired a lot of people and he has inspired me in my life.

“He does not like to make a big deal out of it but we are all so proud of him.”

Gavin Peacock starred for Chelsea in the 1990s


Gavin Peacock starred for Chelsea in the 1990sCredit: News Group Newspapers Ltd
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