Las Vegas–Team Canadas “posse” on the sidelines supporting their teammate. Photo by Buckley Smith
Going into Day 3 at the IMMAF MMA World Championships, Team Canadas hopes were left on three fighters: Brittney Allan, Alex Martinez and Jarrett Vornbrock.
With high expectations for all three of them, we can expect at least one of these folks to make it on to next day.
Day 3 Recap
Womens Flyweight: Brittney Allan (CAN) vs Gabriella Ringblom (SWE)
Las Vegas–Team Canadas Brittney Allan approaches the ring with hands held high for her fight against Swedens Gabriella Ringblom. Photo by Buckley Smith
Team Sweden has already put on an eye opening performance at this years tournament.
And that continued in the first match of the day for Team Canada.
Brittney Allan was well prepared for this fight and it showed in her bout. Going the distance against one of last years medallists is something to be proud of.
The 1st round was all striking, as the two fighters exchanged punches and kicks, with no clear winner.
While Allan took a few harder punches than her opponent, the round could have easily been called a draw.
In the 2nd round though, the style changed up, with a lot of the fight going to the ground and Ringblom holding a clear advantage.
But after surviving being pinned on the ground for minutes at a time, the 3rd round went back to Allans style: striking.
And this time it seemed like she may have held the advantage for the better part of the 3rd round.
But as both fighters tired, they stopped blocking shots, and it became painful to watch as they both simply allowed themselves to be punched repeatedly in the face.
And while Allan seemed like she had a couple chances to end it, the intensity of the first two rounds had tired both fighters out, and the fight ended up going the distance.
And while the judges eventually sided with Ringblom, Allan put up a hell of a fight and should hold her head high knowing that next year she should be back here, and ready to kick some more ass.
For highlights of Brittneys fight click here.
Mens Welterweight – Alexander Martinez (CAN) vs Benjamin Bennett (USA)
Las Vegas–A clearly elated Alex Martinez celebrates following the judges decision. Photo by Buckley Smith.
Coming into this tournament, everyone involved with Team Canada knew that Alex Martinez had what it took to take things all the way.
After coming up one fight short in last years tournament, getting a silver medal for his efforts, Martinez is showing that he is ready to go one step further.
After his win on day 1 over CHECK, Martinez showed his championship-calibre skills again in his day 3 win over Benjamin Bennett of the United States of America.
Showing his mental strength, faith in himself (and God, judging by his pre-fight prayers on the steps) and generally well-rounded game, Martinez toyed with Bennett over the course of all 3 rounds; never looking threatened.
While that’s is not to say that he dominated the judges cards by any mean, as Bennett more than held his own.
But the look on Bennetts face after every strike by Martinez said alot.
Bennett could be seen shaking his head after every punch and kick, as if to say “Shit, I got my moneys worth here.”
And boy did he ever.
While Bennett definitely came back in the third round to give Martinez something to worry about (which gave me serious nerves watching the fight).
When all was said and done, it was Martinez bouncing around the ring screaming at the top of his lungs, after the judges handed him the fight.
Ever the gentlemen though, Martinez went to talk to his opponent after the decision, and the two of them exchanged tips and compliments. (Bennett could be seen saying that Martinez had “perfect kicks” that “scared the shit out of him”)
And now Martinez is one step closer to his goal, and what his whole team knows he can achieve: a World Championship.
For a video of the fight click here.
Mens Flyweight – Jarrett Vornbrock (CAN) vs Josh Neale (GBR)
Las Vegas–Jarrett Vornbrock celebrates after a fight he, and most in attendance, thought he had won. Photo by Buckley Smith.
In all honesty, ladies and gentlemen, Team Canada should have two fighters going on to the next round, and possibly competing for the title.
Jarrett Vornbrock gave his absolute all in his fight, looking dominating at times, and at worst looking on par with his opponent at other times.
But at no point did Vornbrock look like he was overmatched, or look like he could lose this fight.
And yet, somehow, the judges did not see it that way.
Absolutely baffling that somehow it was given unanimously to Vornbrocks opponent, Josh Neale.
From the moment the fight started Vornbrock was more mobile, landed more strikes and overall did more damage.
Neale was bleeding from the first round, and Vornbrock did not let up at any point.
Despite a serious reach disadvantage, Vornbrock consistently was the one to land the better blows.
And while he may have suffered slightly from the ground game, it wasn’t enough for him to lose the fight in my eyes.
Standing in the ring after the fight, no one on Team Canada seemed to have a doubt at all that the fight was a win for Vornbrock.
And yet, somehow here we are talking about it being a loss.
But Vornbrock, ever the attentive learner, is all but guaranteed good things in the future of his career.
Here is to you Jarrett! An amazingly talented fighter and an absolute class act!
For highlights of the fight click here.
So there you have it folks, Team Canada is down to one fighter. At least there is still the chance for one gold medal, and it couldn’t be in better hands than Alex Martinez’s.