Repeat or Revenge - Triple Impact 4
Triple Impact 4 Review - 28/02/15 at Porirua Te Rauparaha Arena
8 Champions will walk into the ring tonight; they call it Triple Impact because they represent 3 combat disciplines; Boxing, Muay Thai, and MMA. That means the talent fighting in tonight’s event will be incredibly competitive, and well rounded. No titles are on the line tonight. The only title these fighters are fighting for will be to find out who is the best in the ring.
Mark Hampton (KO promotions/ MTI) is busy running around making sure tonight is going to be a success. He will also be cornering his MTI fighters. A man with many hats to fill, Mark has been involved with these events since 1992 and running shows since 2000. I asked him about tonight’s event, and about one of his fighters; Gentiane AAA Lupi (MTI, NZ Boxing Champion & NZ Muay Thai Champion) on the main event fighting her rubber match. This time it will be a boxing match against the crimsoned hair dynamo; BayBee Nansen (SMAC Gym Auckland, South Pacific Muay Thai Champion).
Boxing match is under international boxing rules eg. WBC/ WBO etc.
Mark said “Lupi is one of the most active fighters in New Zealand having fought 14 times last year in three different disciplines and winning both Muay Thai, and boxing titles. Lupi is starting her MMA career as well”.
I asked Mark, for those who haven’t been to one of these shows, why should they come and check it out? Mark’s reply was; “When you’ve been once, you’ll understand that live fighting is the most exciting sports in the entire world, it puts everything else to shame.”
I spoke earlier with another fighter while he was warming up. Tanera Terry (The fight Shop, MMA North Island champion). I asked him, “You’re a MMA fighter, this is Muay Thai fight, how are you going to beat him at his own game?
“He’s used to fighting Muay Thai fighters, he hasn’t faced anyone with MMA stand up before. My skills and technique will be different to his other opponents,” Tanera replied.
Stewart Chambers his trainer says: “Generally we train the athletes in their skills, we don’t train to fight a specific fighter, but we do make game plans for the opponents.
Pearse Sheilds (Scorpion Thaiboxing, North Island Mauy Thai Champion) vs Tanera Terry in Muay Thai rules.
Sheilds fights well with push kicks, and a strong clinch game. Terry has more success in throwing combinations together on the inside, as Sheilds looks to have the reach advantage. In the third round both men were still very much in there, it looks to be pretty even. Sheilds wins by Unanimous Decision.
Bevan Hunt (Wellington ThaiBoxing) vs Lachie Bowker (MTI). in Muay Thai rules.
Straight out of the bullpen Hunt throws a powerful leg kick; a loud slap echoes the arena. Hunt is looked to pressure the fight by coming forward with combinations. Bowker had his hands down a bit throughout the fight, and barely misses a head kick from Hunt. Then in the second round Bowker cuts an angle, throws a beautifully well timed overhand right, and Hunt is down for the ten count, he’s up, and makes his way to the corner but it seams like they’re going to stop it. Stoppage, Winner is: Bowker.
Aiesha Maoate (Tranzformus) vs. Elanor Samuel (The Fight shop)
Maoate slips and weaves beautifully with huge hooks. Samuel has a great right hand. The hometown favourite was Maoate. Samuel is hanging in the pocket with Maoate. When it ended, the crowd was on their feet. It ended up being a split decision to Maoate.
Jerry Norris (Oliver MMA Kapiti, NZ MMA champion) vs. Josh Hargreaves (MTI) Muay Thai rules.
This was a war, but you couldn’t tell over Madonna’s Virgin entrance by Hargreaves, MTI at it again. Norris had a wider stance, and great kicks. By the end of round one, Hargreaves wore red on his ribs and legs. The second round was even more aggressive. At the end of the round Hargreaves caught Norris’s leg, and push punched him to the canvas. The crowd loved it. The fight was fought all over the ring, and we saw a high intensity with a great display of everything from clinches, to trips, knees and elbows. Winner by unanimous decision: Norris.
Vanessa Masoe (Tranzformus) vs. Sarah Mcleod Canterbury (Kapiti Coast boxing club) boxing.
This fight had two different styles. Masoe comes in with three punch combos, and had a very tall stance, while Canterbury looks to stick and move, by darting in and out with her jab, and straight right. There was a moment in round two when Masoe took her foot off the gas pedal, perhaps looking more to counter. They finished the fight with a split decision. Winner: Canterbury.
Matt Lethal Lapwood (Grizzl Y ETK AKL) vs. Caleb Lim (MTI) Muay Thai rules.
This was one of those don’t blink moments. These men were around 55kg, and they lived in the matrix. Lapwood wasted no time to get the fight started. Looking to put the pressure on Lim with push kicks, and both exchange blows. He’s got Lim close to the ropes, and then. BOOOOOOM!!!! A head kick by Lim, drops Lapwood to the canvas. A split second the whole arena was silent then it was chaos. Lim celebrates, and the crowd jumped out of their seats with a standing ovation. Lapwood was still out for a while; it was a reminder that although this is entertainment, this sport should be taken very seriously. Lapwood gets up, and the crowd cheer that he is okay. The fight lasted 13 seconds. Winner by KO goes to Caleb Lim.
Aumareva Aumareva (Olivia MMA Kapiti) vs Jade The Blade Soliga (He Toa) Muay Thai rules.
Soliga had a flash knocked down in the first round but momentum changes in the second round, it was during the third round Aumareva looked to be either hurt, or not enough in his gas tank. He had fallen to the canvas a couple of times already, but his heart would not let him stay down. It was an amazing display of skills, and courage by both men. Winner by Unanimous decision: Soliga
BayBee Nansen vs. Gentiane AAA Lupi international boxing rules
They both hold wins over each other in Muay Thai. There is something to be said when you have fought someone a couple of times, you will know them better, it will motivate you, especially if they have a win and a lost over you. It pushes for greatness from both competitors, and the bar will be raised to see who will win the trilogy.
Lupi appeared to be the taller fighter with a traditional boxing stance, her reach could help her as she throws a one two, and lands a nice hook. Nansen stands more in a Philly shell stance, looking to maybe shoulder roll, and looking for more body shots; this is a six round fight so maybe she is looking to slow her opponent down in the later rounds.
During the middle rounds Nansen moves a lot better, she is weaving out of Lupi’s punches, and circles out. Her footwork is good and she is finding success with her over hand right. Lupi looks to of adapted well in the later rounds, and manages to catch Nansen as she ducks out. There were not many clinches in this match. It was the sixth round now, the last round.
Both fighters have fought in a masterful war, but they move slow and calculated as they leave their corners. They go at it one more time, the audience held their breath as they both exchange on the inside. The bell rings (kind of). The bell couldn’t quite be heard, and left both fighters in a confused state, guard still up, and holding back their punches, and breathing heavily. Then the bell is finally rung more convincingly. Both fighters embrace, mostly joy, and partly relieved it was over (for now). The scorecard was read; it all came down to this, who will take the trilogy? “Majority Decision to… Gentiane AAA Lupi!” Both champions hug one more time. Lupi’s kids were in the ring with her to meet the women who had been trying to punch their mum in the face for the last 20 minutes. This brought the best out of each other, in terms of skills, iron will, and at the end; comradely between the both of them.
Tommo Khunseuk Ward (Jai) vs. Johnny Roil (Kapiti Coast Boxing club) Boxing
Momentum changed back and forward, both men bite down on their mouthpiece and just swung til the lactic acids in their arms could not take anymore, but they ignored the pain only finding relief as the final bell rung to end the fourth round. Maybe they wanted to steal the show? Either way, these two may have to settle it again. It ends as a Draw. It was a great way to end the show.
Post fight interview with Lupi:
I ran into Lupi as she was helping out MTI take down the ring after the fight. I asked her what was it like fighting your first fight with Nansen in a boxing match?
Lupi said: “She’s my nemesis I guess, First boxing match, so you feel like you’ve learnt a whole lot, but there’s so much more of the textbook you haven’t even begun to read. Every game is difficult, and bigger then you think it is. So you just got to be constantly learning.”
I asked her to talk about what is it like to be someone who is a representative of female fighters, mothers, and someone who may have started late in the game.
Lupi responds: “I’m proud to be old, a mum and to be fighting. Someone would ask, I bet you wished you started when you were 20, I said I wouldn’t of, because I didn’t have kids and wasn’t driven to hit things. Kids bring certain stress to your life, and make you realise things, I started when I was 37. I never gassed in the ring, so as long as I keep my fitness; there is no reason why I can’t get to the top, and that’s what I plan to do. I’m happy that other mum’s message me and say; I just started and never been fit before, and now they are out there doing it. It’s great”.
Afterwards, I remember what Mark Hampton told me earlier on, and I tried to remember how close I was to the ring; sweat flying, crowd roaring, the loud slaps of the feet hitting another fighter’s thigh, and that head kick. No matter how hard I try to capture those moments in my head, nothing can quite capture the spirit, the atmosphere, and the experience you feel just by being there live.