Show no mercy

Spoils of war: Rob Horrocks sporting a bloody eye during a kickboxing bout this month. PICTURE: LIONESS PHOTOGRAPHY

A Queenstown kickboxer’s come back from a bad cut above his eye to swiftly knock out his opponent.

Fight Science head coach Rob Horrocks was fighting Jordan Smart on his home turf at a Rumble fight night in Wellington’s Lower Hutt two weeks ago when his opponent push-kicked him in the face only about 30 seconds into the first round.

‘‘I think his toe went into my eye and it split my eyelid, so I couldn’t see anything out of my left eye.

‘‘All of the blood was going into my eye.’’

The referee wanted to stop the fight, however Horrocks says his corner man, Queenstowner Diego Beneduzzi, ‘‘was saying, like, ‘come on, man, like it’s only a tiny cut, he’ll keep fighting’’’.

The ref then got a doctor to look at the injury, who cleared Horrocks to continue fighting, on condition he kept monitoring him.

‘‘When the doctor was looking at my eye, I can’t remember what he was saying because all I was thinking was, ‘go and finish the fight right now’.’’

Horrocks duly knocked out Smart about 15 seconds later.

He says in Thailand push-kicking an opponent with the bottom of your foot can be seen as offensive.

‘‘So when he didn’t go all the way down, and I had the chance to hit him one in extra time, then I took my opportunity, ’cos if he wants to kick my face, then I will hit him right to the end.’’

Meanwhile, Horrocks, 33, gets in the ring in Auckland on August 13 for the long-delayed final of the inaugural 64kg Apex Muay Thai Warrior Series.

After winning his semi-final in May last year, he’d been due to fight Taranaki’s Travis Schwitzer in September, however that was twice postponed due to Covid.

Schwitzer’s since pulled out, so Horrocks is now fighting the former’s semi-final opponent, Auckland-based Ale Taumalolo, for the Apex New Zealand professional Muay Thai championship title.

Prize money for the fight is $4000.

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