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'Report from the Park Ave Double Whammy'.
'PART TWO– The Night show -

THE world may be football-mad at the moment – but last Saturday (June 24) a corner of Belfast was obsessed with a different sort of kicking.
A unique double whammy kickboxing show took place at the Park Avenue Hotel in the city – The event seen a matinee show running from 1pm to 3.30pm featuring first timers and novices and then an evening series of bouts which ran from 7.30 – 10pm. The evening seen three British titles and Celtic titles at weights from lightweight to heavyweight.
“Nothing on this scale has ever happened before,” said promoter Billy Murray. “It has taken an awful lot of planning and organisation. Aside from setting up matches for a lot of rising young stars of the sport, we’ve also been trying to make matches for these bigger names, trying to get them all title shots.

Here’s a rundown on some of the big fights of the day

Kicking For Glory - Fight fans thrilled by double whammy corker!

Young BelterIan Young, the football star-turned kickboxer, is celebrating his first ever title at the weekend.
The chisel-chinned former Linfield man took the vacant WKN Celtic Super-welterweight crown in emphatic fashion in Belfast at the weekend with a convincing points win.
Though the fight went all four rounds, Young was comfortably ahead of his tough Scottish opponent Scott Peatrie.
“I’m delighted,” said Young. “I felt good in the ring, I was confident and my shots were working. He pushed me but I never felt in any real danger until he caught me with a good kick to the body.
“It was also great to see so many fight fans packed in when there were all the distractions of the World Cup. I guess nothing beats the thrill of a live show.”
Young said he and coach Billy Murray will now start working towards a defence of his title then hopefully a British title.
Ian lands a Round kickDouble Whammy each fighter landDouble kickThe winning team - and a big thank to  Scott Peatrie

The winner Andrew Grimason - Grimason: Thomas he was dangerous to the endTOP OF THE BILL on the evening card was World Light middleweight champion Andrew Grimason. He was fighting in his home city for the first time since he became champ and was never really troubled in his non-title bout with Aberdeen’s Alan Thomas. It was a good work-out for tougher opponents who are on the way, not taking any thing away from Thomas he was dangerous to the end.

Andrew hits home with a kick on the very tough Alan ThomasGot-yeahGood boxing skillsAlan Thomas lands a good jab and was dangerous right to the final bell

Another rising star of Murray’s ProKick camp is Mark Hennessy. The Belfast man was tipped for greatness by some of the sports biggest names – and he is beginning to live up to the tough billing. He dispatched Glasgow’s Jackie Byrnie within two rounds with a devastating display of kicking and punching combinations.
Hennessy had the brave Scot on the canvas four times over two rounds before the Swiss referee Carl Emery stepped in to call a halt to the match.
fac-Face at the start of the bouthennessy lands a hard low kicAnother low finds the markAnd the new British champion Mark Hennessy

With so many classy fights on the bill, there were many classy displays – mostly for ProKick's men. Young Stuart Jess from Dromore is now WKN British light welterweight champion. He took it from the English belt-holder Barinder Singh in a close fought fight. When Singh travelled from Leicester he might have thought it was a matter of course against the much less experienced Jess. But Jess grabbed his opportunity with both hands – and some precision round-house kicks from both men made it difficult for the judges to split it – two judges giving a draw and the third shading it to Stuart Jessto become the British WKN light welterweight champion. Looks like a good one for a rematch, come on Jag get it on in England.
A big thanks for Jagtor and Barinder from Leceister Kickboxing for travelling to Belfast on short notice when Stuart’s original opponent Mickey Shields dropped out.
lets get ready Barinder lands a good punchmums the wordNew british champion

A young Motherwell man is celebrating an unlikely British title after beating the belt-holder on his home patch at the Park Ave at the weekend.
Super Cruiserweight David Ford only stepped in to face Carrickfergus’s Peter Rusk after the number one contender and former champion Darren Thompson pulled out. It was just 24 hours before Saturday’s fight that Thompson withdrew with a recurrence of an old shoulder injury. The Motherwell man Ford - appeared to be there to make up the numbers, but performed a classic snatch and grab – he was roundly beaten for three rounds before landing a match-winner in the final round stopping the title holder.
“It was an amazing performance,” said event promoter Billy Murray. “Young David had a good reputation and we were delighted he stood in at the last minute to allow a title defence to go ahead. I thought he’d give a good account of himself, but not like this. Peter Rusk was a worthy champion and even though he forced three standing counts for Ford and he was deducted a point for a spinning back elbow, he held on. Then from nowhere, in the final few seconds of the final round, he caught Rusk and the ref stepped in. It was a staggering fight, some say that the ref was a bit too quick to stop the fight, but the referee is there for the safety of the boys – I have no complaints.”
David’s trainer Gary Langford said, “ That may have been a shocker to fight fans in Belfast but not to me, I know what kind of power and heart Scotland’s new British champion has, I’m delighted for him.” Mr Langford went on to say. "David will have his first defence in mid August at home in Motherwell at the Hilton hotel, and we’ll return the favour to Rusk for giving us the opportunity, just to show that David Ford is the real deal.”
It was a night of mixed success for Scotland. Alexander White, also from Motherwell, was stripped of his Lightweight British title after he showed up a staggering five kilos overweight. The rep from sanctioning body the WKN awarded the title to White’s opponent Aubrey Tarr. However Tarr will have to make his first mandatory defence of his belt AGAINST White at the event in August. That is, of course, should White make the weight.

“I want to salute all the fighters,” said Murray. “I’m delighted the ProKick men did so well. Many of them had been going through Billy’s bootcamp – three weeks of 6.30am runs and circuits – and their superior fitness told in the ring. I’ll be bringing the Bootcamp back for the next event. I want to thank the medical staff who stopped a couple of fighters getting into the ring when they felt they were carrying injuries. WE pride ourselves on doing things by the book in WKN sanctioned shows and this was no exception.”

On a day that had seen boxing cancelled in the Ulster Hall, over 1,000 kickboxing fans packed into the Park Avenue Hotel during the two shows. Murray was delighted.
“It was brilliant, really brilliant,” he said. “We set ourselves a very tough brief making this promotion – these two promotions – work. But the desire of the fighters was there and fans reaction was wonderful. People told me I was a fool to put on a promotion during the World Cup, but Belfast’s kickboxing fans are loyal and when you have a card with the names we have, I knew they would come.”

Here's the results in brief:


WKN British light-Welterweight match 4x2
Stuart Jess (Dromore-NI) Winner on points Vs Barinder Singh (English - Champion)

WKN British Super-Cruiserweight 4x2 -
Peter Rusk (Carrickfergus Champion) Vs David Ford Winner 4th round (Scotland )

British WKN Middleweight Low leg kick title 4x2
Mark Hennessy (Belfast) Winner 2nd round KKO Vs Jackie Byrnie (Scotland)

WKN Celtic Super-Welterweight title 4x2
Ian Young (Belfast) Winner on points Vs Steve Peatrie (Dundee champion)

WKN Prestige Light-Middleweight Full-Contact 4x2
Andrew Grimason (Belfast) Winner points Vs Alan Thomas (Aberdeen)

WKN British Bantamweight title 7x2
Alexander White Vs Aubrey Tarr (Belfast) (Champion)
Alexander failed to make the weight and was stripped of the title, Tarr is now the intrim British champion however his first defence will have to be against White.

WKN British Super Heavyweight title 4x2
Martin Connolly (Carrickfergus) Vs Steve Bonner (Aberdeen - Champion)
A disappointed Martin Connolly failed the pre fight medical as the doctor advised him not to fight.
This was to be a British title defence for the Aberdeen fighter. Unfortunately the Prokick fighter Martin Connolly didn't get his chance against the un-beaten Steve Bonner. Mr Bonner was understanding about the whole situation. Thanks Steve

The WKN have asked all regional promoters to intensify the pre fight medical to bring them to the highest standard as safety for the fighters is paramount.
Two other fighter on the day show who also failed the pre fight medical in a non title bout - John Miskelly from Steel Heels

'It was a gladiatorial clash
of the newest fighters around and all the greats'.


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