Luke’s IFMA run & Upcoming Fights shows in Adelaide and QLD

Luke’s IFMA Games Campaign

Luke “the Tomahawk” Thompson recently went over to Cancun, Mexico to represent Australia at the IFMA games, also our own head coach Rowan was also able to accompany as an assistant coach for the Australian team. For those who doesn’t know what the IFMA games are it’s held in a different country every year and is Muaythai’s version of the Olympics where experienced professional and amateur competitors are selected through regional and national competitions to represent their homeland on the world stage. There is B-grade and A-grade levels at IFMA, B-grade is use headgear, cotton shin pads, elbow guards and chest protector, while A-grade just don’t use the chest protector, both levels are done under Full Thai rules. Even though they are padded events, you get some of the world’s best professionals fight here, like this year’s 71kg A-grade final was Andrei Kubelin of Belarus  who is listed on Wikipedia has having 95 pro fights and 115 amateur fights versed Yodwicha Por Boonsit of Thailand who is listed as 225 pro fights on wikipedia also, Yodwicha walked away with a classy win.

This will mark Luke’s second time at IFMA, his first time was was 2017 in Belarus where he walked away with the bronze medal, he won against India by TKO in the quarter finals and lost against turkey (and the eventual Gold medalist) in close points decision. This year was a smaller bracket as Luke was set to go straight into the Semi-finals, his first match was Lucas Allsina from Argentina who holds a respectable pro record that spans globally. Luke won the match by dominant points decision, but in doing so sustained a bad injury to his knee from a not quite by the rule book throw from Allsina, Luke still wishing to continue in the tournament and was confident he could still be competitive for the Gold medal match decided to battle through. In the finals, it was Oscar from USA who beat Mexico in the semis to get the opportunity to contend. The match was close with Luke showing better hand skills and active clinching, a Oscar countered by using teeps and pot shots, in the end Oscar got his hand raised and Luke’s knee held up the whole fight only for it to give away once he thanked his opponent for the match. Luke is now back home with a Silver medal and his leg seems to be ok but needs further looking at. Also, our friends at Phoenix gym we there too with Zoe, Daniel and Jared making the team selection. Zoe also Silver Medaled beating Finalnd, USA and then losing on points against Russia in the finals. Thank you to Anthony Manning, Corey Impelmans and Peter Boyd for looking after the Australian team and also thank you to A-tech Australia for sponsoring Luke and Rowan to go to Mexico.

If you want to hear about the breakdown of Luke’s fights by the Enter the Double Dragon Podcast crew click on this link: Episode 18

 

Adelaide: Knees of Fury

This Saturday we got Hugh O’Donnell and Dion Beattie fighting at one of Australia’s most established shows, Knees of Fury run by Ethan Shepp. The boys are the main event, with Dion taking on Trent Spacie in a Full thai rules affair over 5 rounds and Hugh face off Mathew Stevens for the IKBF Australian Mod Thai title. The lads have both been in good form and are more than ready to represent NSW Muaythai in the City of Churches. it’s going to be a 70’s theme to celebrate their 70th show to date, look out for the our coaching staff to be dressed up in the corner.

Queensland: WAKO nationals

We are racking up these frequent flyer miles as we are heading to the Goldcoast for WAKO nationals June 2nd, Ben Branch with be looking to get back in action after having a bit of a break. WAKO is similar to IFMA where Professionals and Amateurs compete together in padded event, but they use K1 style of rules, Which is kickboxing with knees allowed, no kick catching or elbows permitted and limited use of clinching. They also hold a World games each year in a different country, you find a lot of the competitors that fight in IFMA also fight at the WAKO world games and this is how many of the European countries especially have gigantic records and are super formidable opponents just through sheer volume of competition. With the inclusions for MTA States and Nationals for IFMA selection, hopefully WAKO can get a NSW states event in conjunction with their Nationals event happening soon and all fighters can benefit from getting more fight experience.

New Classes added to our Kids/Teens programs & Luke in Mexico at IFMA games

New Little Dragons Kung fu class and Parents express boxing

We are few weeks into the 2nd term on this year, The kids and teens classes are constantly growing and producing very competent martial artists. Our Little Dragons KungFu class (5-8 year olds) we have added a Friday 4.15pm class to help accommodate for the growing numbers in the classes and also for some of the keen students more days to come in and train. So with Little Dragons now on Mon/Wed/Fri we have also added a Parents express boxing at the same times as Little Dragons this gives the Parents an opportunity to train while the kids are in class! It’s only 30 mins long and you get to learn the basics of boxing while getting fitter, no fitness level or previous boxing experience required and we supply the gear if you need.

 

New After School Kung FU Class

Afterschool Kung fu (8 year olds and up) has also got a new class added too, we are starting a Saturday class at 11am. The beauty of Martial arts compared to other sports your children may play on the weekend is training is on rain, hail or shine, it also holds a far lower injury rate than other contact and ball sports with all the benefits of learning coordination, building confidence, getting fitter and interacting positively with people. Below is statistics from the Australian institute of Health and Welfare study in to Australian sports Injury hospitalisations in 2011-2012, we fall into the Combative sports category lumped in with boxing, MMA and other martial arts. As you can see we only make up 1.8% of the total injury rate compared to the top five sports injuries that result in hospitalisation AFL, Soccer, cycling, motor sports and football sports is a whopping 40.4%. We pride ourselves in our thorough kids/teens martial arts curriculum which progresses students systemically into more contact work (always done with padded personal protection) when they show the skills necessary to be able to do it with control and no excepts before that. Please ask our coaches for a run down of the curriculum if you have any queries.

 

The Tomahawk goes to Mexico

Our Cruiserweight fighter Luke “The Tomahawk” Thompson and Coach Rowan have landed safely in Cancun, Mexico with the rest of the AUS team for the IFMA games. These world games in the Olympics of Muaythai where the best amateurs and pro thaiboxers around the world are invited to compete against one another to see who ends up on the winner’s podium after 10 days of fighting competition. Luke got to represent AUS last year and got the Bronze, plus he was the only Australian to medal that year. This year after getting gold at the MTA nationals he gets to represent again and looks even better this time around with a solid year of top level fights under his belt, we would like to take this opportunity to thank A-Tech Australia for sponsoring Luke and Rowan to go to this prestigious event, even though Luke earned the right to participate each athlete has to fund the trip/accommodation on his own money. So having a great sponsor like A-tech is the only way we can live this opportunities. Luke’s first fight is on May 16th and hopefully we will have a link to post on our facebook of the bout.

 

Upcoming coming events for Team Double Dragon: May 26th Knees of Fury/Adelaide, June 9th Jez fight night/Bonnyrigg

Play by plays from the Muaythai team’s outings at MTA development day and War on the North Shore

Development day at VT -1

March 24th we headed out to Vt-1 gym in Chatwoods with a team of 3 fighters to take part in another MTA development day. We had Karina Laurance, John Devine and young Kai weate-jones matched up for Muaythai action. First up was Kai (16 year olds) versing an heavier 18 year old from Langes’s MMA, which was agreed upon in advance which is all good, Kai had a great show in composure and scoring well with damaging Thai techniques but not with out having to deal with barrages from his opponent, in the end Kai won on points. Next up was John Devine (who is actually a teacher at the same school as Kai), he was matched with a solid fella from Carioti MMA and it turned out to be one of the most entertaining fights of the day, John showed a strong kick and sweep game and both men traded lancing right hands throughout the bout, John got the nod from the judges. Karina was up last and was set to fight a girl from VT-1 on her home turf, it was a back and forth battle of kicks and clinching, after the final bell rung the judges saw it in favor of her opponent, but everyone that trains up and jumps in on these development days are winners in our eyes as it takes a lot of courage that a majority of people don’t have to step in the ring and try out your craft against an resisting opponent. MTA again produced another great day for novice competitors to cut their teeth in competition without sustaining major damage.

War on the North shore

Friday April 6th was were on one of Sydney’s most established fight shows War on the North Shore, run by Nick Stone. It’s always a well run show with good match ups. Karina Cardenas Salazar was set up in a 4 women tournament with other NSW standouts in Lara Aloha from Bulldog Manly, Jennie Sung from PTJ and Tylisha Turner from UTC. After a random draw Karina got Tylisha first up (both have fought each other before, Karina took the win then), This fight went the distance, the first round Tylisha looked sharp while Karina was figuring out her range, second round was a toss up but Karina was finding her hands and clinch distance and Tylisha slapped a few kicks here and there, then the third round Karina owned it with a boxing combos and a stifling clinch game. The judges saw it for Tylisha unfortunately and she advanced into the finals. On the other side Lara took a close decision against Jennie and in the finals Lara completely shut down Tylisha with excellent clinching and knees, making her the champion of the night. Also this night we also had Dion Beattie against a the big unit Dan from Bulldog Manly, it was a lively affair with Dion putting together nice combos from head to body and vice versa and this opponent getting a few huge throws, Dion got the unanimous decision win. Last up was young Jack Moses making his amateur debut against another young gun from Machai Fairtex with 1 fight under his belt, Jack used very nice kicks and piercing knees in the clinch to steal away a split decision win.

Upcoming Events for the team: MTA development day at SMT Campbelltown April 28th, Knees of Fury Adelaide May 26th, WAKO nationals Goldcoast June 2nd.

Teams results from Siam 2 Sydney

Siam 2 Sydney: Hugh’s title defence & Laura’s big show debut

March 10th we had Hugh and Laura on one of NSW’s premier Muaythai show’s Siam2Sydney. This show is actually where Hugh made his leap onto the big show stage and now it was Laura’s turn to do the same. Even though she has fought in Thailand, it’s a different ballgame seeing your friends and family in the crowd supporting you, plus the tempo can be a lot more frantic and high pace in the west compared to local stadium shows in Thailand. Laura’s Opponent (Sarah) from CKO where meant to meet at Fire in the Shire but CSA problems lead to it being cancelled on the night, luckily the girl were matched up again on this card quickly.From the start Laura came out strong and the girls got to trading big right hands straight away, in the later half of the fight Laura changed the game up to getting the kicks going and this cinched the decision in the end, as damage on both ends was pretty even, but Laura’s use of Thai techniques is what got her over the line. It was a competitive fight and these girls will no doubt meet again at some stage.

Headlining the amateur card before the pros was Hugh defending his MTA state title against Dan Marshall from Phoenix gym in ACT. Phoenix and Double Dragon share a long history as their head coach/owner Anthony Manning trained and fought under Mick Spinks for a time and we go there for sparring often as they always raise elite talent. But we had to postpone any training with each other for a while as these two had to meet at MTA nationals (Dan won a split decision in January) and now again at Siam2Sydney. Not ideal for us to be match up with Phoenix on the regular but this is to be expected from two of the best schools on the east coast of Australia. The fight itself was high paced and showcased by Hugh’s low kicks and lead leg feints versus Dan’s Rib kicks and forward pressure. In the end Hugh took the win which splits them both 1 win each against each other, will there be a trilogy? Time will tell.

Overall Siam2Sydney always puts a great production getting eyes on NSW’s best talent and also bringing in legit contenders for interstate. We are always excited to be on their shows.

Boxing this weekend

This Saturday we have split duties in amateur boxing, with Luke Thompson going to Goulburn to an BANSW boxing event and Karina Cardenas Salazar of an league boxing exhibition match as we could not get a proper match after 3 opponents dropped out. An exhibition match is pretty much getting in front of a crowd and sparring which is good to do to get comfortable in front of crowds fighting but the result will be always a draw with controlled contact.

 

Next events for the Team: March 17th Goulburn BANSW boxing/Kemps creek league boxing, March 24th MTA development day at VT1, April 6th war on the North shore Muaythai.

Recap of Fire in the Shire event, Short notice boxing fight & Upcoming Siam 2 Sydney Title defence

Fire In The Shire Fight Night

Feb 17th finally saw Muaythai return to the Sutherland Shire finally! There hasn’t been a event for Thai boxing here since Mick Spinks use to promote them back in the 90s. This event was quite spectacular, the lighting and music made a pumped atmosphere without being too gawdy or leaving your ears ringing, the fights were well matched up as each bout was highly competitive ensuring fast action that everyone enjoyed. On our end we had 6 people matched up, unfortunately if was cut down to 5 as a miscommunication leading up to the night between the promoters and the NSW Sports commission saw our girl Laura and her opponent missed out on being able to compete, luckily our friends at Siam 2 Sydney were kind enough to make that fight happen on their show March 10th (but more on that later). First up though we had Dion Beattie, he put on a class performance and showed his versatility in both orthodox and southpaw stance and took home a Decision win. Next was Jono Towers fighting up a couple division from his usually weight class, but he put a valiant effort in and made the fight entertaining, only to be on the wrong side of a decision in the end. Jordy Khalil was our next guy in and showed a much improved clinch game scoring some nice throws which complimented his overall striking game, he won the decision. On to the main events with “The Fire from the Shire” Hugh O’Donnell in a clash of AUS v NZ in the form of  the talented Jordan Forlong who has a good dose of international competition experience from the New Zealand’s champion stable, House of Pain. This was a battle of Jordan’s heavy hitting salvos and Hugh’s Precision kicking game, when the score cards were read it was our guy Hugh getting his hand raised. In the Final match of the night was a high anticipated rematch between Luke “Tomahawk” Thompson versus Billy McAlees from Boxing Works, last time Billy won against Luke in the finals of one of the many famous War on the North shore 4 Man tournaments, but this time was going to be different, Luke met Billy’s heavy hitting style by making him work in close quarters through a top notch clinch game and not hanging in the ranges that make Billy a very dangerous opponent. Luke’s hand was raised and remains NSW MTA cruiserweight champion.

 

Amateur Boxing Fenech Fight at Five Dock

Fresh off his win On Fire in the Shire, Luke wanted to do some boxing again. Nothing was coming up in his weight class, but at the last moment we were offered a match against an experienced opponent clocking in at 110kg, 15kg above Luke’s weight. But The Tomahawk was game and keen to try out his footwork, so we accepted the match. it ended up being a great match of technique and speed versus brawn. Luke came away with the Win.

 

Siam 2 Sydney March 10th

This Saturday we have Hugh back in the ring to defend his MTA junior Middleweight title against Dan Marshall from Phoenix gym, these guys have trained together in the past before and met in MTA nationals earlier this year with Dan taking the closest of Split decisions, this time Hugh is bringing something new to the table and looking to retain his title. Also we have Laura Cave matched up with this fight she was meant to have on Fire in the Shire, so she got extra time to train which is always a positive. We still got tickets in the gym so come along and support the team!

Upcoming events for the team: March 10th Siam2Sydney Muaythai, March 17th Boxing, April 6th War on on the north shore Muaythai.

Recap of MTA nationals and MTA Development day, Fire in the shire recap coming soon!

It’s been a couple big weeks for us here for Team Double Dragon and still got a few more big ones ahead. Bit a long post ahead, but it’s an interesting recap and look ahead on the year so far.

 

MTA Nationals at Goldcoast

On the Australia day long weekend we took a team up to sunny Goldcoast for Muaythai Australia’s National championships, which the gold medal winners can place on the AUS team to compete at the IFMA world games held in Cancun Mexico in May this year. First up we had Hugh O’Donnell matched up with Daniel Marshall from our sister gym Phoenix in ACT, in what would have been a cracker medal match instead it was the first bracket of the tournament because matches are randomly computer generated. Daniel took a super close split decision. We look forward to these two matching up again March 11th on Siam2Sydney for Hugh’s MTA state title defense. Next we had Karina Cardenas Salazar fight Jennie from PTJ, Karina ended up taking the decision and had to fight the next day in the gold medal match against seasoned QLD Competitor Brooke Cooper from Kaos Martial arts. Karina had carried a neck injury into this competition and avoided upsetting it in the 1st round, but not the case in the 2nd match as Brooke from the start rushed her in the early going an and dominated in the clinch and after the 1st round the neck injury was too great and the smart thing to do was to call it off, but a silver medal is a great accomplishment. Laura Cave who was in the ring next, was matched with Julia from Boonchu gym this went all 3 rounds and was a good battle which Julia took home the decision in the end, giving Laura a Silver medal. Last up was Luke Thompson, who previously represented AUS in Belarus in the IFMA 2017 games and was the only Australian to medal (Bronze). “The Tomahawk” got straight to work chopped up his opponent’s legs from South Australia to the point that they waved off the fight after the 1st round., earning him the Gold medal. Luke now has a chance to go to Mexico in May. MTA nationals is a fantastic event which we’ll try to make each year, as it’s a padded tournament enabling people to get a few fights in without little people pulling out because of injury and the level of competition is of a high standard.

 

MTA Development day

Feb 3rd marked the first MTA Padded fights Development day which was held here at our Gym. It was an action packed day with 20 fights in total with gyms coming from as far as Newcastle and Port Macquarie. Representing team Double Dragon was our youngsters Kai and Chris, then our adults Laura, Nath and Lachlan. They performed to the standard we set for our team and they all got the gold in the end. We’ll like to thank all the gyms that got involved and help us make this a smooth running event and hopefully see you at the next MTA development day March 24th at Vt-1 gym chatswood.

 

Fire in the Shire at Sharks leagues club recap will be later this week!

 

Upcoming events for Team Double Dragon: March 2nd Fenech fight at Five dock/Boxing, March 10th Siam2Sydney at Ryde/Muay thai.

Hugh wins first MTA states championship, Kung fu grading for 2017 and end of year recap

Hugh wins Gold in MTA inaugural NSW state championship

A week ago our very own “Fire from the Shire” Hugh O’Donnell competed in Muaythai Australia’s (MTA) first NSW state championship, this hopes to grow in the future to be a feeder to the MTA nationals to send only NSW’s best Nak Muays (male fighters) and Nak Muay Yings (female) and from there if you medal at nationals you get a chance to represent Australia at the World IFMA games (2018 is been held in Mexico), though this first NSW states was small in turn out we believe this will grow into a firm event each year. Hugh got 2 fights in this day to get to the gold medal finish, this format is great for multiple fights as you wear light shinpads, elbow pads, head gear and a light chest shield, to allow a lot of fight exp without massive amount of damage to the shin/ribs and minimise cuts. We look forward to sending a team to QLD in January for MTA nationals!

End of year Kung Fu Grading

On Saturday was our annual end of year Jin Wu Koon Kung Fu grading, we were lucky enough to have the master himself Sifu Cheuk fai Chan to help oversee it with Sifu Mick Spinks. Everyone had a great performance especially Katarina, Paul, Pete and young  Tamara, Sifu Chan commented on the high standard of our Kung Fu program and Sifu Mick had this to say about the students grading “It is a proud moment to see the students giving their best even on a stifling hot day like this”.

   

End of Year recap for Team Double Dragon

We want to take this time to thank everyone that trained with us in 2017 and look forward to an even stronger 2018! This year in for the Muaythai team we amassed a 50 total fights; 39 wins/11 losses, 2 MTA NSW titles, 1 MTA state championship, 1 MTA Nationals gold & silver, 1 IFMA bronze medal (fought 2 matches in Belarus), 1 MASA Australian title, 2 WAKO Australian titles, 1 MASA south pacific, 1 IWKBF south pacific title and 1 loss for the IWKBF commonwealth title in a bout that could be a contender for fight of the year. We also had a BJJ team that competed and had podium finishes, plus a boxing team with some classy wins and some closely contested losses. We have not had a team for either of these disciplines in years, which shows the extra time and hard work our coaches have put in these groups for it to grow into having students competent enough to compete on a respectable level. So thank you again for making this gym a special place for everyone to come have fun and learn.

Just a reminder our last classes for 2017 is Saturday Dec 23rd and we re-open to train in 2018 Wednesday Jan 3rd.

 

Last weekend’s Dual state Fight shows & Upcoming Presentation day

Total Kaos Fight show &  Battle of the Gloves

Last Saturday we had two fights show to attend, One at Brisbane on Total Kaos promotions Muay thai show with Luke “the Tomohawk” Thompson & Karina “K2” Cardneas Salazar and also had another show; Battle of the Gloves at Glebe PCYC for some amateur boxing with Dion Beattie &  Anthony Keato. Coach Rowan got the plane trip and Coach Shane got the local road trip, both Luke and Karina put on very dominate performances in QLD with strong use of their boxing with low kicks against very experienced locals, hopefully we get asked back as it was a great show to be apart of. On the Boxing side of things Dion put in good use of a stiff jab and counter shots in the pocket, but in the end a close decision went to his opponent  which was a fair call. Keato’s proper match fell through only a week out, but a replacement was found for a exhibition match which means the outcome will be a draw no matter what, Keato’s boxing with use of angles and movement was greatly improved for his last outing and we were happy about his overall performance.

Photos of Luke & Karina above done by Sharon Richards Photographics, who always does a beautiful job. check out the rest of her fight photographic here

 

Coach Steve, Anthony Keato, Dion Beattie and Coach Shane at Battle of the gloves (pictured above)

25th Nov is Double Dragon’s annual Presentation day/end of year party

This upcoming Saturday we are doing the end of year presentations were we announce who’s names are on going onto the perpetual shields at the gym, acknowledging the hard work they have put in for 2017, also it’s a day to have fun with the whole crew with families and partners welcome to come too. We will provide most of the food, just bring your own drinks if you have any special food requirements please bring in something to suit your needs. This year we will be having our own “Race the stops the nation” Prudence v Karina in a 50m dash, cost $10 to spectate and all proceeds go to help funding the fight team get to nationals in QLD at the end of January 2018.

 

Upcoming shows for Team Double Dragon: Dec 8th-10th MTA States/SRG gym Alexandria, January 26-28th MTA Nationals/QLD