A combined team from Cambridge University Kickboxing Society (CUKBS) and Anglia Ruskin University Kickboxing Club (ARUKBC) defeated Bath University by four fights to three with one draw on Thursday evening; both teams are coached by CARISMA a martial arts club established in Cambridge for over 12 year, represented by its head coach Massimo Gaetani.
The event, held in Bath, was attended by approximately seven hundred spectators, and included half time entertainment from Bath University dancing groups and a pre-event cheerleading display.
The first fight was between Nikos Konstanidis (ARUKBC) and James Boxall (Bath). Konstanidis counterpunched well against a determined opponent, landing a number of good shots to the head. In the end he was unlucky to only be awarded a draw by the judges.
The next three fights all went to Cambridge with wins for Julius Bušauskas (CUKBS), Daphne Tsalli (CUKBS) and Georgios Evangelinos (ARUKBC). Fighting against Bušauskas was Dom Parfitt, a Cambridge local (and CARISMA student during summer months) studying at Bath. Parfitt did well in the opening exchanges, troubling Bušauskas with some good punching combinations. As the fight went on however Bušauskas’ speed and kicking ability began to tell as he landed a series of impressive strikes to the head. Daphne Tsalli performed particularly well in what was her first fight, dominating her match throughout with some excellent punches. Evangelinos also did well in his fight against Robert Dinsey, Bath’s most experienced fighter. Dinsey worked hard but was mostly unable to find a way through Evangelinos guard and had no response to some excellent punching combinations.
Bath fought back however and won the next two fights against Cambridge kickboxers Tim Williamson (CUKBS) and Alex Elliott (CUKBS), both of whom were fighting for the first time. Williamson fought bravely but couldn’t quite do enough to take the decision against a good opponent. Taking on Elliott was Bath Captain Chris Harvey. Elliott struggled early on in the fight, finding it difficult to deal with the speed and movement of his more experienced opponent. He did have some good moments as the fight went on however, getting Harvey against the ropes on a number of occasions with some determined boxing. Unfortunately in the end that was not enough and the judges’ decision went the way of the Bath fighter.
Next in the ring was CUKBS vice-president Ollie Osunkunle (CUKBS), taking on Bath University Kickboxing Club Chairman André John. Osunkunle fought an impressive fight and emerged as the clear winner, with John unable to deal with his speed and power.
Last up for Cambridge was Alex Kaus (CUKBS), fighting against Ahmed Suleiman. This was a closely contested match with both fighters landing some good shots. In the end it was the Bath man who came out on top however, after doing just enough to secure the judges decision.
Overall the night was very successful for the Cambridge team; for the first time CUKBS and ARUKBC were joint against a third opponent and all fighters performed well and gaining valuable experience in the ring.