ISKA UK Launch MMA division headed by Lee Hasdell
ISKA UK will launch a MMA division which will include Amateur, Semi-Pro and Pro-MMA categories. The new division will be headed Lee Hasdell who accepted the position as ISKA UK National Director for MMA.
Lee Hasdell was the main driving force and innovator for MMA in the UK in the 90’s, and helped develop many of the standards within the British MMA scene of today, to many Lee is considered a true pioneer of UK MMA, he was one of the first English fighters to compete in K-1 in 1995, while in Japan for his first K-1 fight at Yokohama Arena he saw live professional MMA for the first time this marked a turning point in his career. A year later he return to Japan to start training in MMA with famous Japanese wrestler Akira Meada at the RINGS Dojo, shortly after he had shocked the world by winning an eight man Shootboxing Tournament in Milan beating Dutch Kickboxing star Andre Manaart in the final. Lee had a long and successful career fighting mostly in Japan he fought some big names including Fedor Emelianenko.
ISKA have been sanctioning MMA in America for some time, MMA now accounts for more than 60% of its activity. Strikeforce was the leading promotion for ISKA world championship kickboxing in the USA and the main provider of ISKA programming for ESPN TV network for 12 years. Moving with the times, Strikeforce promoter Scott Coker unveiled the Strikeforce Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) series with the Shamrock versus Gracie event on 10 March 2006, the first sanctioned mixed martial arts fight card in California. The Frank Shamrock versus Cesar Gracie match sold out the HP Pavilion in San Jose attracting a record audience of 18,265. Scott Coker recently signed a deal with Showtime TV for a series of live Strikeforce events.
The ISKA UK MMA division will provide a neutral arena where a fighter can develop his career without being allied to a branded event. A full sanctioning service will be available to promoters, including officials, insurance, matchmaking and marketing. British and Regional titles will be available in nine weight divisions Flyweight to Super-heavyweight for both Semi-Pro and Pro-MMA rules. Amateur MMA will be added to the National and bi-annual World and European Amateur Championship. ISKA Amateur MMA will make its debut at the European Championship in Rome, Italy, October 2009.
18 March 2009
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