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GC brings home Gold from the Australasians

Every year, the second weekend of September sees the Will-Machado Australasian BJJ family come together in Melbourne for The Gathering.  It’s a not to be missed event with the Saturday devoted to the Australasian champs, and the Sunday to Rigan Machado’s seminars.

With this years event dedicated to the memory of  black belt Troy Flugge who had passed away barely a week earlier, it had a special feel to it.

This year saw a solid contingent of Kiwis attend the comp with some fantastic results.  Errol Watson and Travis Browne – GC  Hamilton coaches  attending for their first time,both came away with silver, Carleen Pearce and Jeremey Gibbons both put in gutsy performances to come away with bronze and Coach Mike Fooks took out the gold in his division, winning the the gold medal match with an armbar from guard.  Andrew Craven while not medalling this year demonstrated again his competitive jiu jitsu in both the weight class and open divisions.

Mike attributes his win to having a clear game plan and focusing on his guard game over the last few months.  “It’s probably been the most focused I’ve been on executing a specific game plan – in particular getting it to ground quickly, trusting in my guard to be ok if I didn’t end up on top.”

New Zealand as a whole punched above it’s weight with further medals coming from the team at Submission Martial Arts, the Hamilton clubs, GSW and Academy of Combat.

Even better was the chance to spend time on the mat on Sunday with BJJ Legend Rigan Machado.  Rigan once again delivered pure gold in his Sunday seminars.  In fact so good was the seminar material Will-Machado purple belt Leyla Okyay was able to take one of the techniques and win gold at the panpacs the following week!

The seminars are also a great place to catch up with old friends and opponents, and in particular  it was fantastic to catch up with black belt Ken Dunstan who gave GC so much support in our early days.

Medals, new techniques and catching up with old friends, more than enough reason to  reserve the date for next year now!


GC Fighters win at ICNZ 15


September 3rd saw two GroundControl fighters make their A-Class debut in ICNZ’s brand new cage at ICNZ 15.  After successful runs at B-Class, both Nic Saxton and Shane Young were stepping up to the A-Class ruleset, allowing strikes to the head on the ground.

Nic Saxton was first up.  Nic had been working very hard on a game plan and executed it perfectly.  Dominant in the clinch Nic was able to take it to the ground and obtain the “beatdown” position he has been working on.  This position takes away the opponent’s ability to defend strikes on the ground.  So when Nic worked into the position the ref acted quickly to step in and stop the fight.

Next it was Shane’s turn.  Shane was up against a very tough and hard hitting opponent in Hayden Watt, and this match turned into an absolute war.  In a back and forth battle that many have called the fight of the night both men showed their heart.  Bloodied early in the match Shane never took a backward step and at the end of  four rounds the judges could not seperate the two fighters.  After escaping an early backmount attempt early in the overtime round, Shane dominated position to leave no doubt and took out a well earned unanimous decsion.

Both Nic and Shane worked exteremly hard in their preparation for the fights, as did their coaches Neil Swailes and Andrew Craven, and we couldn’t be more pleased for them.

Travis Moors takes GCMMA to Australia

Travis faces off against Shane Wescombe at the weigh in

On Friday November 5 Travis Moors represented GroundControl in our first international MMA match.  The fixture was the Fury event run by Advance Martial arts in Queensland.  Billed as an Australia vs. New Zealand event several NZ fighters made the trip across the Tasman – many of them like Travis with relatively few fights under their belts.  Travis was always going to be in a tough match, up against a much more experienced grappler.  He fought a great fight – his heavy hands forcing his opponent to go for the takedown time and again.  Travis did a fantastic job of regaining his feet and defending a couple of very dangerous guillotine attempts with some sick guard passing.  The third round saw Travis land some nice combos and damaging looking knees.  At the end of three rounds the judges could not separate the two fighters and announced the match a draw.

This fight was a big step up for Travis against quality opposition and we’re stoked with the result.  He showed the heart and composure we all knew he would and the GroundControl team are very proud of him.  Travis’ draw continues GC’s unbeaten run.

Lets make sure we get a good contingent to cheer on Richie Cooper at King of the Door on November 13!

1 GroundControl go 7 for 7

On Satruday October 23, three of our members fought in the Art of War promotion held at the Auckland Boxing Association.  This was a mix of MMA and boxing events and a great opportunity for some of the boys to show the results of the hard work they’ve been putting into training.

Shayne Young once again showed his mettle to take out a hard earned points decision in his boxing match.

Evander Agnew impressed with his composure in his first MMA outing to win with a tight armbar from guard in the third round.  These were two impressive results, particularly given Shayne and Evander’s young age.  Expect big things from these boys in the future.

Just as impressive was Luwayne Lowe’s MMA debut.  Luwayne also showed great composure and the ability to remember under pressure what he’d drilled only that week to defend a dangerous guillotine attempt in the first round.  He came back to dominate the second and third on the ground, almost sinking the choke and winning a unanimous points decision – to the joy of his huge support base.

It was an outstanding night which along with our success at the last ICNZ puts GCMMA into a 7 from 7 winning streak.  All eyes now turn to Travis’ fight in Australia this weekend and Richie’s preparation for both King of the Door and Supremacy.