Since one of the members of the Hamilton School of Martial Arts was to fight at the Nationals of the Muay Thai/Kickboxing Championships, we opted to go see him live versus watching Emelianenko and Arlovski on PPV. Adam Hensen is a very talented, hard-working, guy. Two years ago, he earned a gold medal in the Jiu Jitsu Worlds in England. (He attended with the Canadian team, coached by Mickey Dimic of the The Hamilton School of Martial Arts; the Canadian team won the team silver.) He has won many events since. We figured we’d show support to someone Dave and Mike knew and had worked out with.
We also got there early enough that we had seats in the third row, ideal for hearing as well as seeing (my being a shrimp) what was happening. Seating is always an experience: in this case, we were in front of members of a team, so we heard specific comments about fighters and abilities as well as fighting instructions from them to the fighters. The best shouts were, “Go Mommy! Go!”, directed to Dagmar Glasser in her fight against Sarah Newman. How often do you hear that?
All fights were three two-minute rounds and varied from straight kickboxing to muay thai, without elbow strikes. All fighters wore headgear, boxing gloves, shin guards and foot guards.
There were no knock-outs, and all went to decision. The fights were all exciting: we had two womens’ fights and seven mens’. The womens’ fights had the excitement of Gina Carano’s matches. People DO like to see if the women have the same ability to strike as men. Since I knew no one competing other than Adam, I tended to favour the people who had travelled a long way to attend and had few supporters. In the fight between Theodora Pistiolis and Danika Ellis, I was inwardly cheering for Danika as she was from Nova Scotia and Theodora was in her hometown. Danika gave Theodora an injury on her left cheek which required medical attention, but in the end, Theodora dominated.
Ryan Burgess, from Danika’s club was against Sylwester Organka of a Mississauga club. Organka won this match, but Burgess made him work for it, not giving up and landing some solid punches.
The next fight was again between someone from Nova Scotia, Micky Marshall, and Nenad Cvejic of Mississauga. What an exciting match, with both guys evenly matched and expending so much energy for the entire time! Marshall won, not taking anything from Cvejic, and I think this was the fight of the night.
Adam Hensen handily won his muay thai match against Patrick Pytlik in a unanimous decision. Wow, Adam’s good. When he had Patrick in the clinch, he was in control, with some devastating knees.
The above-mentioned Dagmar Glasser lost her match against Sarah Newman of the local Burlington club, with Newman having a height and reach advantage over the far shorter Glasser. Marco Capobianco’s (Burlington) match against Brian Cortu (Brockville) was again thrilling. Capobianco had high kicks and superior skills, but Cortu did not give up and fought through the full six minutes.
Next came the heavyweights, Robbie Wiseman, about 95 kilos, from Newfoundland (I should cheer for him) versus Sandy Pembroke, 108 kilos, from British Columbia. Wait a minute! They’re from the opposite sides of the country. Who do I cheer for now? These guys put on a show. What a lot of energy from huge guys. There were a couple of moments when Sandy looked pooped (he had a bad nosebleed and a cut on the head), but then he came back. Wiseman won the match, but not easily.
The lightweights came next: Ross Mylet from the local Burlington club versus Derek Charbonneau from Hanover, Ontario, about two hours’ drive away. The Energizer bunny had nothing on these guys: Mylet was fantastic with high kicks and so much energy. A unanimous decision in his favour.
The last match of the night was between Brian Dickson of the Burlington club and Headley Hinds of the Mississauga club. Hinds tended to have his hands too low and yet would move forward. He seemed to get angry when Dickson clocked him and then would press the issue, still with his hands too low. Dickson backed up a lot, but he made some nice connections both with punches and kicks. Dickson got the win.
This was a very fun night and certainly worth the price of admittance. Live fights have an energy that you certainly can’t get from watching television in your living room. We’re very happy for Adam and congratulate all the participants.
January 25, 2009