Thirsty fight fans who are looking for a fight night that packs a real punch should check out ‘Fight Pit 2’ on Saturday night, March 19.
The event, which is being run by a local Mixed Martial Arts club, Fight Pit, will be held in the Youth Development Centre, Oriel Park with doors opening at 7pm.
Mixed Martial Arts is the largest growing indoor sport in the world, thanks to the popularity of the premier organisation in the United States, Ultimate Fighting Championship, which has a cult fanbase around the globe.
Since the UFC’s success, clubs have sprung up all over the world and throughout Ireland, with Fight Pit the latest club in Dundalk to offer a variety of Martial Arts classes to combat sport fans.
The club’s base at Williamson’s Mall houses a pro 24ft cage, which will be the setting for the 16 fights pencilled for this Saturday night. It is the second event held by the club after they held their first event at the end of 2010.
According to Fight Pit owner Niall McCabe, the event is attracting a much larger crowd this time round, from fighters to spectators.
“We have a lot of clubs, from Dublin and all over the country who want to get fighters on the card, which is great to see.
“In the MMA world, a lot of people are in the same circle so to have people want to come to fight on our card is brilliant.
“We have a large number of tickets sold and there is a substantial number of people who want to travel down from Dublin for the event.”
The action packed fight card will feature a number of Dundalk fighters, who train at the Fight Pit, including Phillip O’Rourke, Chris Menary, David Ziggy, Shane Flanagan, Benny Fagan, Stephen Rice, Damien Dowling, Jay and 16-year-old Chris Mulligan, who is stepping into the cage for a teenage fight.
On the night, there will be three pro rules fights along with a number of C and B class fights.
For the past number of months, Niall, along with Muay Thai coaches Brian Gallagher, Joe Davidson, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu coach Wayne Fagan and strength and condition coach Barry Martin has been getting the lads ready for the fights, something Niall insists on.
“It’s new for a lot of them getting into the cage, but we make sure that they are ready for it as it is a bit daunting. We get them involved in heavy sparring and get them some Muay Thai, boxing or kickboxing fights before they get into the cage for experience.
“It takes a lot to get up and fight in the cage.”
For anyone not used to MMA, Niall is encouraging them to come along and see the elements of BJJ, Kickboxing, Muay Thai, Boxing, Judo, Karate and more on display. They can also enquire about classes at the club itself. “We have a lot of GAA players here who do their strength and conditioning work and I think we have something for everyone. We sit down and talk with them when they come in and see what they want to do and go from there.”
Tickets are available from Fight Pit, Williamsons Mall, Blade FX, Oriel Park, Embassy Snooker Club, CD World – Longwalk Shopping Centre, priced €20 or €25 for ringside. Admission on the night at the door will cost €25. Alternatively, ring Niall on 086-1578167. Results and report in next week’s Dundalk Democrat.