Well, what a spectacular night that was! The LFS SA finals had dancers, live music, pyrotechnics, hollywood stars, great food, huge prizes and, most importantly, some tremendous fights. I saw the night through a camera lens but could’ve easily watched it all again through my own eyes just to take it all in.
The new ruleset was a departure from standard MMA, and evoked a lot of debate in the martial arts community (checkout this vlog from MMA Africa) but the night proved to be full of high octane striking as hoped. The format also allowed for some great grappling too, with flying triangles, overhead sweeps, and matches won by rear naked choke and guillotines.
Ceeh Khubone and Chris Bobo have to share the title of the most exciting fighter, with plenty of aerial shenanigans. Clotilde Essiane was relentless and stuffed takedowns with good hips before utilising her long reach to dominate the ring. The international fights lived up to expectations with the seasoned pro’s showing fast clinical striking and the final fight of the night was an absolute cracker with Quinton Roussow and Thabani Mndebela giving no ground and leaving everything in the ring. Here’s a couple of quotes about the event:
Lizette Du Plessis (fight manager):
“I have never in all my life had so many emotions running through me. The event was spectacular. The way they made it all about the fighter is absolutely out of this world…. For us and all the athletes that took part, I think this is one of the best tournaments that hit South Africa. Fighters made money and they got appreciated as athletes. That made them love what they do even more. We salute Last Fighter Standing for what they brought to our fighter community.”
“The Vegas-style inspired event was also nothing short of star-studded with the likes of Minnie Dlamini, Bobby and Karlien van Jaarsveld, Maps Maponyane and Mduduzi Mabaso pulling out all the stops on the red carpet”