By PHILIP CHANDLER
While title bouts for three Queenstown Muay Thai fighters have been kicked into next year due to Covid restrictions, the local Fight Science club’s holding a major competition-style
sparring event this Saturday.
Fight Science head coach Rob Horrocks had been due about now to tackle Taranaki’s Travis Schwitzer in the postponed final of the 64kg Apex Muay Thai Warrior Series in Auckland — for a winner’s purse of $9000.
That’s now been put off till February, while Horrocks has also been offered fights in Australia in March and July.
Cruiserweight Noah Shepherd and lightweight Charlie Charalambides had also been due to contest New Zealand Muay Thai titles in Timaru on Saturday, after bagging South Island titles in their weight divisions this year.
However, their fights have now been postponed till March.
‘‘They’ve trained their arses off all year and they’ve improved a lot,’’ Horrocks says.
‘‘It’s a real shame, I want to see the improvements they’ve made, in action.’’
Meanwhile, Horrocks has organised an inter-club, grassroots match-sparring event at Fight Science for Saturday, across boxing, kickboxing and Muay Thai.
He’s expecting 50 to 100 fighters from the likes of Christchurch, Timaru, Dunedin and Gore, as well as locals.
‘‘Basically, they get a chance to have a little bit of a scrap, and they can get a little more confidence for a proper fight.
‘‘They’re practising moving under pressure.’’
Meantime, Horrocks had two fighters compete in Wellington last weekend.
Unfortunately, heavyweight boxer John McKenna, representing Otago, had his bout against a hometown boxer mistakenly called off in the first round.
Aoife Whelan lost her first Muay Thai bout, against a local, on points, but according to Horrocks ‘‘she had a great performance, showing a lot of heart and great conditioning’’.