Geraldton boxing promoter Paul Barrett to bring first cage fights to city with Fists of Fury III in April

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Kelly Crocos preparing for her cage fight.
Camera IconKelly Crocos preparing for her cage fight. Credit: Supplied

Fight promoter Paul Barrett says his next fight night will feature a step up in intensity, with Geraldton’s first cage matches on the card.

The Fists of Fury III — King of the Cage event is set for April 2, with City of Greater Geraldton mayor Shane Van Styn stepping back into the ring alongside other local fighters including council hopeful Derek Goforth.

Barrett said the addition of a cage could make matches more exciting. “It makes for more spectacular viewing,” he said. “It adds industrial-like elements. There are some adjustments to make, but not as many as you think.”

Barrett said it could also increase safety for some fight disciplines because there was no risk of falling out between the ropes.

He said as more promotions held mixed nights featuring combinations of boxing, Muay Thai and MMA, cages would become more common. While there was some hesitance in fight circles about moving towards cage matches, ultimately it prevented the risk of rolling out of a traditional ring, he said.

Van Styn, who fought in the most recent Fists of Fury in April, said a cage would bring more energy. “Anything that brings a sport such as MMA and the ever-growing Ultimate Fighting Championship-type matches to Geraldton is to be supported,” he said.

“Paul is always looking to make things bigger and better. ”

Locals Kelly Crocos, Craig Link, Denis “The Fighting Irish” Taylor, Gary Bull, Jamie-Lee Freers and Dan Carter are also on the card.

Van Styn and Crocos, Taylor and Bull are due to fight at a cage event at Pacific MMA in Kalgoorlie in December. Crocos will face Lakyn Neagle in a 57kg bout while Gary Bull will fight Jeremy Clayton in a 69.9kg match. Van Styn will face Tomoana “Wrecker” Wijohn in a rematch, hoping to win the Kalgoorlie super heavyweight belt and bring the Geraldton title back after Wijohn won it in a decision victory in April.

Van Styn, Crocos, Taylor and Bull are due to fight again in January, in Northam.

The UFC and other mixed martial arts promotions like Bellator have become synonymous with modern cage bouts.

Proceeds from Fists of Fury III will go to disability organisation Access to Leisure and Sport.

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