June 24,2014(ISN) – Victoria fighter Gabriel Varga has just returned home to the island after a
triumphant performance at Glory World Series 17 in Los Angeles. The LA forum was
packed and the event which was televised live on Spike TV and the Fight network was
a huge success.
Gabriel fought in the contender tournament where he had to fight
twice in the same evening to capture this honour. This victory has earned Gabriel a
shot at the Glory World Series title before the end of the year.
Gabriel currently holds hold the WKF and WKN Professional World titles, but frankly,
the Glory World Series title is the big brass ring of the kickboxing world.
What I liked most about Gabriel fighting that evening was the match-up of different
styles. His first fight was against an excellent full-rules Muay Thai fighter from
Thailand. Pornsaneh Sitmonchai has very powerful kicks and explosive power.
In that fight, Gabriel learned how to deal with and defeat this kind of attacker.
For the reasons presented below, his second fight was personally the most rewarding
challenge I have ever seen him have to deal with.
In my opinion, winning this fight, was his biggest achievement to date, as here at
home, Gabriel specializes in his personal passion of teaching Martial Arts and Self
Defense to children at Cedar Hill Recreation Centre, Crystal Pool and Studio 4
Shane Oblonsky is a very big man for the Featherweight division and even though he
dropped a lot of weight to make it into this weight class, he was actually unable to
make the weigh-in weight. Due to Gabriel’s thin, fit build, he usually finds
himself with a bit of a reach and height advantage. Gabriel is an incredibly
versatile fighter who is as comfortable working smartly, picking his opponent apart
from the outside as he is standing toe-to-toe
and battling it out. Oblonsky presented a new challenge which has not been put to
Gabriel yet. Shane is not as polished a fighter as Gabriel, but he is highly
skilled, hits very hard, is really durable, made Gabriel look small in the ring and,
as proven, was there to fight. Shane was relentless, never backed down, and due to
his size and toughness, was difficult for Gabriel to hurt. As a Martial Arts
teacher, at the end of the fight, I could not have been more proud of my son.
During my last forty-odd years of Martial Arts training and teaching I have met many
Martial Artists who have never shared my opinion of the incredible value of getting
into the ring. I have always been of the opinion that, if I was not able to put
gloves on and figure out how to function and deal with the pressure of the attack of
an equally-trained opponent in the ring, there is little chance that in a real
situation involving a confrontation with someone who is not drunk, possibly bigger,
stronger and very determined to hurt me, well, there is a very good chance I just
may not be able to take that knife off them or defend myself successfully. Getting
into the ring is an incredible self-defence tool that all Martial Artists should
take advantage of to develop their skill level. There is nothing that can prove your
mettle better than dealing with the relentless attack of an opponent who has all his
faculties and has trained very hard to meet you in the ring – to give you his best
on that given day.
I am completely aware of and agree that any ring sport is just that, a sport with
rules – but, and a big but here, do not fool yourself into thinking that if you
cannot beat a man in the ring the outcome would be any different out of the ring.
Yes, you think you can gouge his eyes, attack his knees or groin, use some
mysterious death-touch technique – but so can he. And, the biggest difference is
they are proven, most likely more durable and have performed countless times under
pressure and will be able to do whatever it is they are capable of as they are
performing under pressure on a regular basis and, as such, their performance is not
hampered, nor do they shrink.
In Toronto back in the 70’s, I had a conversation about fighting someone as tough,
skilled and scary as Canadian fighting legend George Chuvalo. If he hit you, he
could quite possibly kill you and on the other side it would be like hitting a rock.
The cocky, young, naive, self-claimed Martial Arts master explained to me that he
would ‘split the rock’. I was very polite and respectful to him, but my mind was
screaming, “Well, all-righty then, good luck with that!”
This is the case and the situation that Shane Oblonsky presented to Gabriel.
Watching Gabriel learning how to perform and adapt to a much bigger, stronger
opponent, who most certainly had the ability to hurt him – well, it was a true test
I am very grateful to Glory World Series as well as all the excellent fighters
Gabriel has faced over the past ten years. These fighters have presented extreme
challenges to my son – not only towards his development as a world-class ring
fighter – but the further development
of Gabriel as a complete Martial Artist.
I feel that the battle experience he is garnering is invaluable to both him and his
Marital Arts students.
Tried and true is the expression that comes to mind.