Archive for June 24th, 2009

John Wayne Parr is fast approaching a century of fights. The 33 year old star of the Contender Asia had his first fight when he was only 14 and his next fight will be his hundredth.

The Australian, who first started learning Taekwondo at the age of 11, has fought in K-1 and enjoyed a successful boxing career as well as making a brief sojourn into the world of professional MMA. However it is as a Muay Thai fighter that he will best be remembered and it is fitting that his one hundredth fight should be against a fellow Muay Thai legend, Buakaw Por Pramuk.

‘It feels as though it has taken bloody forever to reach 100 fights but I finally made it and it will be against one of the best fighters on the planet on the biggest Muay Thai show in the world,’ he says.

The fight will be taking place on June 26th at Montego Bay in Jamaica in possibly the biggest international event in the history of the sport. ‘Buakaw has beaten so many world class fighters and at one stage was untouchable but now things are starting to change and he is starting to get tagged more and more. If I can give him a hard fight when he was at his peak and know I can beat him if he is not “on” fighting me,’ says John.

John Wayne Parr Heading out to Jamaica - Photo by Carmen Bakker

John Wayne Parr Heading out to Jamaica - Photo by Carmen Bakker

Buakaw won their previous encounter in the final of the K-2 Max Tournament in 2004 and the Australian is looking forward to the opportunity to get revenge in Jamaica, ‘I am excited about this fight. Buakaw is a super star

I’m not worried because I have a lot of experience of getting in the ring with good fighters. I don’t know whether I will win the entire tournament but I have a lot of confidence in myself. I have been training specifically for K-1 and I am in great shape.’ John Wayne Parr, alongside fellow Contender Asia veteran Yodsenklai, was notable by his absence from the 2009 K-1 World Max Tournament. Would he like to have been involved in such a prestigious event?
‘I would love to still be in K-1 Max but it’s not up to me it’s up to the bosses of the corporation. In my last fight for them I fought Kinami and beat him pretty easy. That was my last fight on my contract and K-1 said they would re-sign me. The next promotion came and went and no one contacted me and I been waiting ever since. I don’t mind though, K-1 is great to fight for but I have managed to stay busy fighting what I love best in full Muay Thai so life goes on. I don’t miss making 70kg either.’
The inaugural series of reality TV show the Contender Asia did much to raise the profile of Muay Thai world wide and while he may have only finished as runner up John was the undeniable star of the show. ‘Not only did the Contender Asia help get the sport of Muay Thai into lounge rooms across the world that would never usually spend the time to tune in but also helped lift my profile to a whole new level.

Now wherever I go around the world I have people come up and say hello because they watched the show. It really is a buzz to get recognized as the guy that was on that show.’
John was very much the veteran of the house and he managed to endear himself to housemates and viewers alike. He has fond memories of his time on the show, ‘Being older and having as many fights as I have had meant I got a lot of respect off the younger guys and they would all ask me to work there corner which was quite an honor. Even though I was older then most of the boys I still held my own and got to the final, cant ask for much more then that,’ he says ‘I am happy with everything that happened on the show apart from getting chickenpox.

The whole time when I was in Singapore I wanted to reach the final for myself, but once the show started to air I realized how important it was for my profile world wide with so many people watching. I lost the final but I am happy I gave Yodsanklai a hard fight, those knock downs were the hardest I have ever been punched in the face but I got up and least I made Yod earn his $150,000 instead of just giving it to him.’ Since losing to Yodsanklai John has defeated fellow Contender Asia cast members Sean Wright and Dzhabar Askerov and, more impressively, recently avenged his 2002 loss to Mike Zambidis. Now aged 33 and with 99 bouts under his belt the fight with Buakaw will give him the perfectopportunity to demonstrate that the journey which began with that first Taekwondo lesson 22 years ago is far from over.

John Wayne Parr spoke exclusively to James Goyder for Muay Thai Phuket Magazine www.jamesgoyder.com

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There has been much speculation and numerous rumours that the UFC would be heading to Manchester England with Bisping a headline event in the latter quarter of 2009, with a November date being thrown around as the most likely.

However  Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Keith Kier confirmed on US MMA forum The Underground that the UFC has formally requested a Nov. 21 event date at the Mandalay Bay Events Centre in Las Vegas for UFC 105.


It now appears that there is some substance t both these rumours.  MMA Junkie are reporting that multiple sources have told them that the Vegas event, UFC 106, will likely follow a Nov 14 UFC 105 event which is expected to take place in the U.K. ,possibly at the site of their first foray into the UK at the MEN Arena in Manchester.

No fights are set for either card, though UFC 105 will likely be heavy on UK and mainland European talent and it doesn’t stretch the imagination too much to expect Bisping to headline in his home city, with additional inclusions of “TUF 9” winners Ross Pearson and James Wilks.

With the UFC partnership with Setanta now ended it still remains to be seen how UK and European fans will be able to view the UK event.

The latest 2009 schedule (subject to change) for the UFC now includes:

  • UFC 100 on July 11 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas
  • UFC 101 on Aug. 8 at the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia
  • UFC 102 on Aug. 29 at the Rose Garden in Portland, Ore.
  • UFC Fight Night 19 on Sept. 16 at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City
  • UFC 103 on Sept. 19 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas
  • UFC 104 on Oct. 24 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles
  • UFC 105 on Nov. 14 in the U.K. MEN Arena
  • UFC 106 on Nov. 21 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas
  • The Ultimate Fighter 10 Finale on Dec. 5 at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas

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