L to R: Thom Harinck, Marcel, Raul Catinas, and some other dude I don’t recognise.
Marcel Dragan recalls the quotation from William Blake’s ‘Proverbs of Hell’; ‘He whose face gives no light shall never become a star.’ Marcel was the first, and probably the most influential, coach of one of the world’s most talented heavyweight kickboxers, Raul Catinas. This interview provides insight into Raul, as well as Cor Hemmers and Ramon Dekkers, in addition to the culture of Romania and why a hard sport like Muay Thai flourishes under such hard conditions. It’s also a portrait of one of the most unselfish, decent trainers I have met during my involvement with the sport.
Athough, he persists in calling me Jerry.
When I trained at Golden Glory, the most famous fighter on-campus was Chalid ‘Die Faust’ Arrab. There were another four lesser-known guys who were just as awesome; Gokhan Saki, Alistair Overeem, Errol Zimmerman and his cousin, Benjey. The first three have gone on to become household names (in kickboxing households, at least).
For my money, Benjey is next.
Anthony ‘The Hitman’ Vella was one of the outstanding fighters of early Australian Muay Thai. He had twenty fights for nineteen wins; his only loss coming via injury while fighting Paul ‘The Hurricane’ Briggs for a super-middleweight world title. Before I met him, I walked past this picture every day on my way into the gym.
International Kickboxer, Vol.17, no.5
John Wayne and Angie Parr juggle the commitments of kids, family life and high-profile careers as two of the nations most respected and successful fighters. What qualities make for a great family life? Are they similar to the qualities that make a great fighter? JARROD BOYLE investigates
Yusuke Fujimoto at the business end of bad news:
International Kickboxer Magazine, Vol.17, No.4
Sam Greco says that the jab is a fighter’s yardstick; if you can reach your opponent with your jab, then you are at effective range for all other weapons. A good, solid jab is the foundation of kickboxing technique. It is important to make a distinction at this early point, however; a kickboxer isn’t the same animal as a Thai boxer. For a kickboxer, the jab is a close-range weapon. For a Thai boxer, the jab is a middle-range weapon.
International Kickboxer Magazine Vol. 17 No.3
Competitive fighting can be viewed as being similar to a conversation; one person talks, one person replies. Each person says what they believe will give them an advantage and hopefully, the upper hand. After all, fighting is all about convincing the three judges, whether it comes by knockout or their considered decision, given the arguments that are presented to them. As a counter fighter, you specialise in replying to your opponent. This means you tend to let the other fighter put his case first, which is difficult for a beginner to achieve; in addition to the pain, being hit is pretty alarming! Counter fighting really depends on a cool head and a sound defence.
Sparring with Peter Graham probably wasn't very smart.
International Kickboxer Magazine, Vol 16, Number 6
Sparring is the business end of training. All forms of conditioning (weights, bagwork, padwork, running, drills, etc) should be integrated into a training regimen to serve this most crucial of activities. The quality and intensity of your sparring will be the most important determining factor in pre-fight preparation.
International Kickboxer Magazine, Volume 16, Number 3
Errol Zimmerman showing Bjorn Bregy who's boss at the K1 Europe GP in 2008
Australian Heavyweight Jarrod Boyle lives in Breda, Holland, where he trains out of the world-renowned Golden Glory Gym, home to such champions as Semmy Schilt and Stefan Leko. In the following story, Jarrod takes us inside a typical Dutch ‘A Class’ training session.
A gym like Golden Glory is always educational, even in the change rooms. The other day, Valentijn Overeem made the following comment over borrowed deodorant;
‘It’s great to train at a gym where they really understand heavyweight fighters.’
‘How so?’ I asked.
‘Training for lightweights, middleweights, it’s a totally different thing,’ he said. ‘Smaller fighters, it’s a lot more conditioning. Heavyweights have to concentrate more on their power. They don’t hit each other as much, but everything is hard.’
Me and Chalid 'Die Faust' Arrab, shortly after he almost punched my head off.
International Kickboxer Magazine, Volume 16, Number 2
Melbourne Heavyweight Jarrod Boyle jumped on a plane at the end of February and headed to Breda, Holland for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity – to train at the Golden Glory Gym of K1 stars Semmy Schilt, Stefan Leko and Chalid ‘Die Faust’ Arrab under the auspices of legendary trainers Cor Hemmers and Ramon Dekkers. Here he talks to MICHAEL SCHIAVELLO about life in the cauldron of one of the world’s most successful and toughest gyms.