Thursday, March 29, 2007

Sami aims high in Japan

A MARTIAL arts expert who frequently holidays in Didim has this week given an exclusive interview with Voices over his high kicking ambitions.Sami Berik, a Turkish national now living in Britain, will be only the third UK-based fighter to travel to Japan to take part in the Prıde martial arts event.

He is to set fight in front of a pay-per-vıew TV audience ın excess of 40,000 people against the country’s top Hayato Sakurai in May. It is a busy time for the martial artist who plans to organise a mixed martial arts (MMA) event in Turkey by the end of 2007.

He said: “Turkey has top class wrestlers and top class stand up fighters. I want to create a market where they are able to compete using both skills.

“MMA provides an opportunity for two fighters to compete to their best abilities within a safe environment. The whole fight we fight is based on where we stop. It is the difference between a fighter and a thug.

“In MMA there is no shame in giving up if someone has a submission lock on you. There are so many more variables when floorwork and stand-up fighting is mixed.”

He said the sport is evolving and growing faster than ever before with TV reality shows and various other media getting involved. He got into the sport via email as the promotors were looking for a fighter at short notice and it was in his weight category.

Sami added: “I had always wanted to fight in a cage and had kickboxing experience. After getting refused a few times I didn’t give up and I eventually got my chance.

“I wouldnt be where I am today without the help of so many people. In particular Neil Rosiak who gave up his own free time to train me inTai Chi which helped me to strengthen my posture and understanding of body mechanics and muscle efficiency.

“Also Eddie Kone who teaches me BJJ (Brazillian jujitsu). Its like learning my Alphabet for the ground.”

He explained his love for Didim, the weather and the area as the major selling points for his reason to holiday here with his family. He hopes to buy a property in the resort shortly.


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