In very general terms we have 2 kinds of people joining the gym. Those who profess to want to be fighters & those who don't. In our experience those who talk seldom do. The reality of the hard work is a far cry from the glamor they expect. Ruben is a rare exception. He never shied away from the effort required, in fact he went the extra mile & found his own opponent.
Although the sport is growing in leaps & bounds, especially since the public broadcaster started airing live fights as well as build-ups & a reality show about MMA, there are still very few competitors. Finding match-ups is not always easy. We knew that finding a match for Ruben as a junior heavyweight was going to be tough.
We approached Professional Fighting Championships (PFC) about 6 months before PFC 11 to give them enough time to find a match. Ruben involved as ever heard about another junior, who had a background in boxing. He wasted no time in contacting Seth, they have mutual friends & acquaintances being top athletes at the 2 oldest boys schools. Seth agreed & spoke to his coach & so we had...
Ruben Fourie vs Seth Christian (Junior MMA – Heavyweight – Amateur)
Right from the opening bell it was apparent that these 2 intended to knock each other out. Ruben is usually very technical in his approach, analysing & capitalising on weaknesses he sets his opponent up... At least while sparring. Against Seth he became the aggressor & moved in giving up his reach advantage. The fight became a brawl & this probably played into Seth's hand... Ruben was knocked-out by a perfectly timed right.
Once Ruben regained consciousness his first thought was to congratulate & thank Seth & his team. He then, after taking a few moments to regroup in the locker room (the support from the other fighters & coaches was amazing), mingled with his fans.
Because of its personal & primal nature losing a fight is tough, but at the end of the day it's a sport. We should only measure ourselves on the things we have control over, our preparation & our performance, not the end result. If we have done our best & met our performance goals we can honestly celebrate even in defeat. Think about a runner for example who runs & personal best, breaking the world record but only comes in second.