Northern Ireland take on Switzerland - Results
Saturday 1st October 2011
La Chaux-De-Fonds, Switzerland
The evening started with a presentation and ceremonial opening - teams participating were presented to the packed attendance for what was in store for the Fight-Fans.
The Irish ProKick squad were led to the ring first, shortly followed by other countries competing and finally by the home nation the Swiss.
Stephanie Mc Mullen (Prokick) Vs Laeticia Mauerhofer (Le locle) Winner Points
The night started off with three International light-contact bouts, and the third was fought by ProKick's own Stefanie McMullen 52Kg. The tough little Belfast battler was a stand-in for team mate Amy-Lee Tonner at 60kg - It was classed as a light-contact Catchweight bout however at times it would be difficult to understand the difference as blood was drawn from McMullen nose and also suffered some eye damage which required attention from the ringside doctor. The 30 year-old who conceded an astonishing 9kg in her Full-Contact rule style catchweight contest - under Light-Contact rules.
McMullen face Swiss fighter Laeticia Mauerhofer. Stefanie did amazingly, said Ken Horan " In just her second fight her went toe to toe with her Swiss opponent for three hard rounds, listening well to our advice. He added, "I can't wait to see her fight someone her own weight she will be brilliant after this."
It wasn't until the last round that Stefanie started to land real telling strikes - but the last push was not enough as she found herself on the wrong side of the judges.
Coach Murray was extremely please with Stefanie's performance and to give weight, experience and height away was pretty gutsy, she didn't deserve a loss after just two days notice - fights like these will build her away from home will build her experience real fast.
Gary Fullerton Winner Points (ProKick NI) Vs Damien Sabas (Switzerland)
Next up from the ProKick stable was Belfast's Gary Fullerton who faced Swiss Champion and 'Man Mountain' Damien Sabas. The Swiss fighter was in fantastic shape and looked like he wanted to finish the fight quickly right from the opening round. Sabas opened his account with some stinging kicks along with fast hands but the confident east Belfast fighter kept his composure and used his experience to deflect and weather the onslaught of blows. Out of nowhere Gary through a right hook which hit the target and the Swiss fighter was down for a count of 8.
Second and third rounds were much the same Fullerton forcing and taking to fight to Sabas. Gary took his second win in just two weeks. His corner couldn't have asked for more as Gary used his head, kept on the inside and fought with the heart and determination - Well done on a great win. Next up for the Bar manager Gary, is 'Fright Night' in Belfast and everyone in his team are confident he will continue his winning run.
Stuart Jess (Prokick NI) Vs Loic Jeannin (Panzagym) (France) Winner -Corner stopped bout 3rd
Another ProKick fighter up on the running order was Saintfield based ProKick fighter Stuart Jess who found himself up against a very experienced low-kick fighter in Frenchman Loic Jeannin. Pretty good first round from both fighters but with some heavy leg kicks and some telling boxing blows, the ProKick fighter took a standing 8 count in the second round and unfortunately looked like he couldn't find his feet to recover properly after taking a head kick. The third round was much of the same and after some heavy leg blows the ProKick corner had no choice but to stop the fight against the wishes of Stuart, however the corner has the interest of their fighters at heart.
Ursula Agnew (Prokick NI) Vs Marie-Pierre Limeanstett (Panzagym Switzerland) DRAW
It's been a busy time for Belfast's Ursula Agnew as just last week as she got a draw in her re-match with Galwegian Donna Larkin against whom she lost out in Belfast in June this year. The battling Lightweight this time faced Swiss opponent Marie-Pierre over 3 rounds under K1 Rules and this time it was another draw. Ursula started slow in the first round, was getting beaten to the punch and kick as the Swiss Limeanstett had a game plan and it was working to the letter. At the end of the first round when Agnew came back to the corner, both Murray and Horan read her the riot act saying that if she didn't emerge in the second round with some fight in her, she would face a loss and even a stoppage. This may have spurred her on as she started to go forward and land her own telling low kicks, clearly hurting her Swiss opponent. In the last round, the two girls, knowing that they needed to put their all in to win did just that. At the sound of the final bell it was all up to the judges. Again they couldn't split them and awarded a draw. Some would say that Ursula was fortunate to scrape a draw and others would say that she won the fight. This of course, the opinion of the unofficial judges, you the audience. One thing is for sure, she will need to up her work rate against the K1 Dutch specialist she faces on 30th October in Belfast.
Full-Contact rules - Welter Weight 66kg
- 3x2 rounds
Davy Foster (Prokick NI) Vs Julien Aeschilmann Winner Points (Switzerland)
Davy Foster was the next ProKick fighter to make his way to the ring. The first round was mostly dominated by Swiss opponent Julien Aeschlimann, with Foster covering well but not really off to the best of starts. At the start of round 2, a completely different fighter emerged from the ProKick corner and the Belfast man took the fight straight to his opponent with non stop kicking and punching techniques, putting the Swiss fighter under pressure. Aeschilmann started to look fatigued half way through the second round, gasping for air on what seemed to be every shot. In the third and final round, it was much of the same only more intense work rate from the Ballynahinch father of five understanding that he needed a big finish to come away victorious. In the closing seconds of the fight, Davy caught Aeschilmann with an over-the-top right hand that rocked the Swiss fighter to his boots. The referee jumped in immediately and Davy ran quickly to the neutral corner thinking he was getting a standing count. Unbeknowing that the referee told off the Swiss fighter for holding and no standing 8 count was administered. For reasons unbeknownst to everyone involved, the judging panel thought the Swiss fighter did enough to take the win. This was disheartening as a fighter knows deep down if he has won or lost the fight himself. Foster manned up and congratulated the Swiss fighter Aeschilmann but was clearly disturbed after the fight about the decision. It's one thing training to fight an opponent, but another to have to fight the judges against a decision you have clearly won. Let's hope we can have Aeschilmann back to Belfast in the near future, he was here 4 years ago when he shared the ring with ProKick's Gary Fullerton.
Karl McBlain (Prokick NI) Vs Leonard Tafur (Switzerland) DRAW
Young ProKick fighter Karl McBlain was another of the ProKick team that seemed to find himself on the wrong side of the judges on the evening. Like a few of his team mates before him, he started off the fight at a slower pace than his opponent but quickly made reparations in the second and third rounds. The Karl McBlain that was seen to fight was completely unlike the fighter we have seen in his last few fights and seemed to completely return to form with some clever ringcraft and sharp technique but his efforts didn't seem to impress the judges enough to get the win that many im the venue believed he deserved. Karl finished the stronger of the two fighters but not taking anything away from Leonard, it takes two to make a fight and both lads came there to do just that. They thrilled and entertained the crowd. Well done to both lads.
Darren McMullan (Prokick NI) Vs Tajani Abdeljalil (France) DRAW
Last but not least was ProKick's Darren McMullan. Darren's fight was the official top of the bill bout and had the 2,000 seat capacity crowd on their feet throughout. The first few rounds was tit for tat, Darren throwing the sharper kicking techniques with his French opponent trying to concentrate on countering McMullan's kicks with sharp boxing. McMullan despite some telling blows stood up in his corner for the entire fight not only displaying the fact he wasn't hurt by the French man's hard boxing skill but showing his grit and tenacity that he has become reknowned for in the ProKick Gym. Both men put on a fantastic display for the capacity audience and although (again) most in the audience thought the Belfast fighter did enough to take the win, the judges couldn't seem to split the pair and called the bout a draw.
All in all it was not the most successful nights for the talented ProKick team, especially for Davy Foster. The Belfast fighter was clearly the winner for the majority of the people in attendance, including his own corner and many disagreed with the judges' decisions. It was a clear win for the Belfast fighter but unoffcial opionions don't count on the night and the judges must call the way they see fit.
On a positive note, the hospitality the ProKick team received from the event organisers was without a shadow of a doubt, second to none. Although the fight results didn't go according to plan for the squad, the Swiss promoters and fans couldn't have made the Irish team more welcome and everyone from the all Ireland ProKick select passes on their sincere gratitude and thanks to the hospitality and respect that was shown to them by everyone involved.
A massive thank you must go out to all the event promoters, organisers and fighters from all at ProKick.
A final mention to ProKick's adopted son, Mr Ken Horm, WKN Middleweight Amateur World Champion to take the time out of his busy schedule to help the ProKick squad, hope to see you in Belfast soon. Ken is fighting in the 'Battle Of The Middleweights' in ProKick's Belfast Fright Night show on 30th October.
Enjoy the Pictures of the event...
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