The Fast and Furious combat promotion returned to the Oceana nightclub in Southampton last weekend with one of arguably the most well matched events of the year. Promoter Rich Harding had worked hard against the odds after numerous pull outs had affected his card, but the final result still left the fans with some top fights that saw everybody leaving the venue with a smile on their faces.
The shortest fight of the night just happened to be the main event between Tommy Barlow from Thaiworks and Ammari Diedrick of 4D. It was a positive start for Tommy Barlow but the fight was soon turned on its head quickly as a nasty knee to the ribs courtesy of Diedrick left Barlow injured, unable to breath and unable to continue.
The big knock-out of the night came from Chris Melhuish from Fightworx over Lookborai’s Artjom Zumer. The first round saw Melhuish edging the fight with powerful and accurate strikes as both men gave each other plenty of respect. Zumer started the stronger in the second round but Melhuish was soon landing them powerful shots to see out the round. Into the third round and Zumer started the brightest again, but then Melhuish found his fluidity and started to land beautiful body to head shots. Zumer was durable but stunned, the shots rained and and gained power with the last shot being the cleanest, the power stunned the audience and Zumer was shortly separated from consciousness. It was a spectacular fight from both men that saw the fighter from the South West having his hand raised.
Danielle Butler and Lauren Sillence put on an entertaining fight for the fans, Sillence was to take the decision and Butler made it as difficult for her as possible. Butler showed great composure and patience in the early couple of rounds, but Sillence’s aggressive style and walking down of her opponent impressed the judges and put her opponent under a lot of duress for most of the fight. It took some time but Sillence was able to draw Butler into a slugfest that saw her landing the lion’s share of shots.
It was a wonderful fight between Fightworx fighter Tim Avis and Lookborai’s Stas Svarinskis. Svarinkis’s hands were to be the difference with some beautiful boxing on display. But it was never going to be an easy fight with Avis being very strong in the clinch and rallying hard in the final rounds. Svarinski took the unanimous decision after some beautiful work in the early rounds and some heavy shots in the latter.
It was a very strong start from Lookborai’s Harry McDonald as he dropped Hybrid Muay Thai’s Jack Dodd firstly with an inside left, and then a good old fashioned teep. Credit is due to Dodd though who came out in the second and turned the fight into a war as both men went hell for leather, this continued into the third round with both men landing a lot of heavy shots. It was McDonald’s early work though that earned him the unanimous decision in another highly entertaining fight.
It was to be a high level Muay Thai affair when Poole Thai Academy’s Karol Welendy and Ippon Gym’s Mason Hobbs went one on one. Welendy took the split decision in a fight that must have given the judges nightmares after a strong start from Hobbs that saw him tiring in the third round. Welendy stayed consistent throughout the fight and took the third round on route to victory.
Lookborai’s Brandon De Morney put in a brave performance against Hybrid Muay Thai’s Sam Blower. An early lapse of concentration saw Blower take advantage of the situation and land a heavy body kick on De Morney, this was to be the route that Blower took for most of the fight. De Morney kept it a competitive fight by utilising some great boxing but as Blower rained in the heavy kicks it wasn’t long until he took the unanimous decision.
The knees from within the clinch appeared to be the deciding factor as Poole Thai Academys Lewis Harrison took a unanimous decision over Hybrid Muay Thai’s Martyn Allayt. Allayt looked to skirt the pocket for most of the fight and box his way to victory, but the Savvy Harrison was able the negate this and work his way to the clinch on route to a unanimous decision.
The opening fight of the evening set the pace for the entertaining fights that layed ahead as Minotaurs Affan Khan took on Lookborai’s Elbi Nguo in an exhibition match, great technique was on display as both men showcased a lot of skill.
Later on in the evening The Knowles Academy champion Alex Bublea and Lookborai’s local favourite Mo Abdurahman also wowed the crowd with an exhibition fight after Abdurahman’s opponent pulled out late on. These two popular athletes really covered every facet of Muay Thai as the crowd was treated to some serious ninja skills.
All images supplied by Marc Moggridge.