Hunt makes world title history
SUFFOLK'S Marlon Hunt has become the first person to hold kickboxing's three major world titles at the same time.Hunt from Onehouse, near Stowmarket claimed his latest belt after winning what was billed 'The Fight of the Decade'.
SUFFOLK's Marlon Hunt has become the first person to hold kickboxing's three major world titles at the same time.
Hunt from Onehouse, near Stowmarket claimed his latest belt after winning what was billed 'The Fight of the Decade'.
The 28-year-old has long been the sport's No.1 ranked fighter in the world and, having claimed two of the top three belts across the various organisations, he has now holder of the World Association of Kickboxing Organisations (WAKO) World Pro title.
Hunt defeated World No.1 Muay Thai fighter Christian Di Paolo to achieve the feat.
Di Paolo, who is half-Italian agreed to fight in the full-contact kickboxing format if Hunt dropped seven and a half kilos in weight to come down to his opponents weight.
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The pair fought it out before a sell-out crowd at the new Doncaster Rugby Football arena.
Di Paolo is known for his incredible power and knock-out record, while Hunt is renowned for his speed and tactical thinking and martial arts magazines soon dubbed the bout as 'The Fight of the Decade'.
From the first two rounds Di Paolo took the centre of the ring as both fighters came out with powerful punch and kick combinations.
Rounds three to nine were very close, with Hunt picking up the points by hitting with cleaner scoring shots.
It was a true gladiatorial battle, relentless onslaughts on one another coming thick and fast, however, by the 12th and final round, Hunt was well ahead on points.
When the bell rang Hunt was declared the new Unified and Undisputed WAKO World Pro Champion, creating history.
Hunt thanked his supporters and everyone who had helped him and said: “People around the world know that I have put Suffolk on the map in terms of kickboxing. Through working hard with my personal coach and very good friend Richard Stephens, Master Cris Janson Piers and some of the top fighters in the world I have achieved my childhood dream of becoming WAKO world champion and becoming a true three times world champion.
“There are so many people out there fighting for titles that mean nothing outside of their own town or they have fighters that live five minutes away from each other fighting for European or World titles just to make a quick buck.
“That gives the sport a bad name yet promoters get away with it and it's a real shame. I have won the most respected belt in the world now though and have brought it back to Suffolk.”