Although there was not much Muay Thai action taking place stateside this weekend, there was enough action going on worldwide to satiate even the most ravenous Muay Thai appetite. The action did kick off stateside on Friday night as NYC’s Friday Night Fights presented an anticipated fight card headlined by an exciting bout between Joe Valtellini and Shawn Yarborough. The hard-hitting Valtellini who has earned his “Bazooka Joe” moniker by knocking out every one of his previous opponents, added yet another KO win to his now perfect 6-0 record by viciously knocking out Yarborough in the first round. Whoever Valtellini’s next opponent may be has more than enough footage of Joe viciously knocking out opponents with both hands and feet to keep them up at night. Bottomline, Bazooka Joe is a nightmarish fighter and any opponent looking to step in the ring with Joe knows they run a big risk of having their consciousness knocked into another dimension. If Valtellini wasn’t on the radar before, he definitely should be now. He is a threat to any fighter at 165-169, no matter where they are from.
In the evenings other two professional attractions, New Jersey’s Ognjen Topic once again showcased why he was MTiL’s breakthrough fighter of 2011 when he used his technical striking and ring smarts to outpoint Missouri based MMA fighter, Josh Sampo en route to a unanimous decision win.
Pittsburgh’s Marcus Fisher improved his record to 3-2 as he comfortably outpointed New York’s own Kevin Horowitz en route to a unanimous decision win. Throughout the fight Fisher peppered Horowitz’ skull with vicious knees and perhaps the only reason Fisher did not walk away with a KO/TKO victory was due to Horowitz’ incredible heart and resilience. No matter how hard Fisher tried to finish Horowitz, the tough New Yorker just wouldn’t go down.
Joseph Valtellini def. Shawn Yarborough by KO in Rd. 1
Ognjen Topic def. Josh Samp by Unanimous Decision
Marcus Fisher def. Kevin Horowitz by Unanimous Decision
Stephane Smarth def. Joel Pace by KO in Rd. 2
Sean Aqareva def. Jason Ramos by Unanimous Decision
Artur Balcewicz def. Ian Hastings by Unanimous Decision
Alex Stine def. Wilfredo Acevedo by Unanimous Decision
Melvin Vega def. Hung Nguyen by Unanimous Decision
Arad Namin def. Jafar Toshev by Unanimous Decision
On Sunday March 11th, 2012 American nakmuay Justin Greskiewicz won a hard fought battle against the UK’s Bernie Mendieta at the Fighting Force Championships in Bournemouth, UK to win the WBC international welterweight title. The Philadelphia native opened up a cut on Mendieta’s forehead with an upward elbow in Round 1. Both fighters went back and forth for 5 rounds but in the end the judges awarded Greskiewicz the split decision win and the shiny new green WBC belt. Greskiewicz has long been one of the best and most active nakmuays on the east coast and his former opponents include a who’s who of top North American Muay Thai talent. Always humble in both victory and defeat it is definitely good to see “The Purple People Eater” earn a much deserved win.
Holland’s Aleide Lawant (you can read our pre-fight interview with Aleide here) traveled to Julie Kitchen‘s hometown of Cornwall, England to play the role of spoiler. The tough Dutch kickboxing stylist who recently won the Enfusion finals in Prague and also defeated American Lindsay Scheer at the MPL in November, was most likely hoping to cap off her recent run of success with a victory over “The Queen of Muay Thai”, Julie Kitchen. Julie however, had other plans. The Pride of Cornwall did battle with the visiting Lawant for 5 rounds, and although Lawant was a formidable challenger, Kitchen was simply one step ahead in every round. Kitchen didn’t walk away unscathed however as following the fight her daughter posted a pic of the damage Lawant had done to Kitchen’s leg with the hard leg kicks typical of the Dutch style. Check the pic here. Despite the damage, Julie pressed on and earned her 14th world title via unanimous decision.