Developing future MMA stars

Fighters Inc’s Terrence Balelo takes on Danver Isaacs from Top Primate.

Venters MMA was again at the centre of mixed martial arts arts action at the weekend in a Mixed Martial Arts South Africa (MMASA) event that focused on developing the next generation of fighters in the country.

The tournament aimed to give MMA hopefuls much needed time in the ring in the early stages of their journey to the professional ranks.

With the lack of action due to lockdown regulations, MMASA will want to host as many of such events as possible.

As shown by those who took centre stage in the ring at the weekend, they are hungrier than ever to get back to action.

Renowned MMA coach Anthony Kettle says such events provide a great platform for the development of fighters as it is hosted in a safe environment.

The weekend event saw seven fights including two juniors and a female bout. The main event was contested by Terrence Balelo who has made a name for himself at the amateur levels of MMA.

He took on Denver Isaacs, another star in the making, with Balelo running away with victory in their exchange.

With the event focused more on fighter development, Kettle says the weekend showing proves the Western Cape has a host of bright stars looking to take the MMA world by storm.

He says they are careful to throw them in the deep end to make sure that when the time comes they are up for the challenge.

“From what was displayed we can see that we are developing a nice bunch of guys that will take part in the Western Province championships who will then hopefully compete in the SA champs and thereafter go for the world champs,” said Kettle.

He said they are not so concerned about who is better than who at this level of the competition, but rather want to ensure that there is a competitive team of mixed martial artists coming out of Cape Town and the Western Cape.

“At this stage it’s purely development, we are not trying to push these guys too early in the big events.

“This is the start in our preparations for the Western Province trials and then the SA trials which will all take place next year,” he said.

“It was a brilliant event and you can see the guys were hungry to get back in it after a long break of the lockdown so it was nice to have the guys back in the cage performing,” he said

MMASA will be looking to host at least one such event before the end of the year to make up for the lost time.

“This is the first of many tournaments. We hope to throw one every month or every two months so that our guys can get lots of action in the cage”.

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