WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP KICKBOXING RETURNS TO LAS VEGAS WITH EVENT AT HARD ROCK HOTEL & CASINO SATURDAY, JULY 30
Fighters from Seven Countries, Two Las Vegans
Highlight Finest Assembly of Talent Since
K-1 Cards on ‘The Strip’ During 2007
The finest collection of international kickboxers to compete in Las Vegas in four years–including five current and former world champions–collide Saturday, July 30, in the Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.
Headlining the eight-match card is Alain “The Panther” Ngalani of Hong Kong against Dzevad “BH Machine” Poturak of Sarajevo, Bosnia, for the International Kickboxing Association super heavyweight championship.
Other international fighters include Denis Goncheronok of Minsk, Belarus; Sergio Cario of Amsterdam, Netherlands; Edwin “El Tigre” Aguilar of Tijuana, Mexico; Pavel Turuk of Minsk, Belarus; and Tim Thomas of Birmingham, England.
Las Vegans on the card include Chidi “Chidi Bang Bang” Njokuani and Shawn Yarborough.
The card starts at 7:30 p.m. (Pacific) July 30 with doors to The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino opening at 6:30.
Tickets—priced at $25, $35, $50, $75, $100 and $125—are available at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino box office daily from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and through Ticketmaster, either by calling 702-474-4000 or 800-745-3000 or going on line at ticketmaster.com
Because kicks, along with knee and elbow strikes can be delivered both above and below the waist, kickboxing—when done by world-class professionals—is a more violent and exciting ring sport than boxing.
Also, the very nature of kickboxing, its emphasis on agression and varied forms of attack, eliminates holding and clinching. Further, there is no riding on the mat; all competition is stand-up.
This card generally is acknowledged as being the strongest since K-1 cards were an attraction at several “Strip” hotel-casinos during the middle 2000s, the most recent during 2007.
The nationally and internationally televised card July 30 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is promoted by Martial Arts Association in conjunction with Kickboxing Empire, both of Las Vegas.
In addition to the Ngalani-Poturak IKA super heavyweight championship, other matches July 30 include:
Denis Goncheronok vs. Sergio Cario, heavyweight
Edwin Aguilar vs. Chidi Njokuani, heavyweight
Pavel Turuk vs. Shawn Yarborough, light heavyweight
Tim Thomas vs. Tony “Lionheart” Hervey of Detroit, super welterweight
Women’s lightweight, opponents to be determined
Also on the card will be two amateur matches, one involving men and the other women, with all four competitors from Las Vegas.
The fighters in the IKA super heavyweight championship July 30 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino boast outstanding credentials.
Ngalani, a two-time world champion, has a record of 26-7-1 with 23 knockouts or submissions (KOs) while Poturak has a mark of 47-16-1 with 30 KOs.
Ngalani is expected to weigh in between 235 and 240 pounds while Poturak is expected to come in at approximately 230 pounds.
Goncheronok, the International Federation of Martial Arts (IFMA) world champion for 2006, 2008 and 2009, is undefeated with a record of 8-0 with all wins coming by KO.
Cairo is the current IFMA world champion and has a record of 43-6.
Both are tall for heavyweights at 6-foot-3-inches.
Las Vegan Njokuani, who has a record of 9-1 with six KOs, faces a devastating kicker and southpaw puncher in Aguilar, who has a record of 22-16 with 20 KOs.
Las Vegan Yarborough, who is the World Boxing Council (WBC) United States champion and has a record of 13-3-1 with 11 KOs, also faces a tough task with Turuk, who was the World Association of Kickboxing Organizations (WAKO, K-1) world champion for 2009 and has a record of 26-19 with nine KOs. Not only is Turuk ranked No. 1 among light heavyweights in Belarus, he’s No. 3 among heavyweights.
Thomas, a former International Sport Karate Association (ISKA) world champion, has a record of 57-48 with 32 KOs, while the hard-hitting Hervey has a mark of 13-10 with all wins coming by KO.
All professional matches consist of five, three-minute rounds. While the gloved blows delivered by kickboxers are similar to those used in the sport of boxing (jab,cross, hook, uppercut), the variety and force of kicks are why the sport is enjoying a resurgence of popularity in the United States. Standard kicking techniques are: front kick, side kick, semi-circular kick, roundhouse kick and special or variant kicks. These special kicks include: hook kick, crescent kick, axe kick, back kick, sweeping kick.
Boxers can use spin versions of many of these kicks and jumping versions of any and all kicks.
Knee and elbow strikes also are allowed in kickboxing, further differentiating it from boxing. These blows include straight knee thrust, rising knee strike, side knee snap strike and holding knee strike.