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March Madness: Kickboxing Fights to Watch This Month

March is the biggest month of the year for kickfighting so far with a ton of big fights and events taking place, so what better title for it than March Madness? I'll highlight all the action this month that everyone should know about and keep an eye on.

March 2: Giorgio Petrosyan vs. Ole Laursen - Gotti Promotions

Giorgio Petrosyan is the best fighter in all of kickboxing, so of course it's notable when he fights. This is more of a stay busy fight for him but any time that he fights it's a treat.

March 9: Andrew Tate vs. Vincent Petitjean - Power Trophy 2013

This is a rematch from 2011 where Petitjean won a decision over Tate. Since then, Tate has established himself as one of the top kickboxers in the world at 85kg. Tate will go back to full contact for this fight.

March 9: Suleiman Magomedov vs. Halim Chibani - Monte Carlo Fighting Masters

These two are some of the better fighters around 85kg, and are very under the radar. Magomedov has some really good results and Chibani has been on a big roll lately.

March 9: Yassine Ahaggan vs. Horace Martin - Monte Carlos Fighting Masters

Yassine Ahaggan is another very good 85kg fighter, who lost to the aforementioned Halim Chibani last year. Here he looks to rebound against the veteran "Boy Boy" Martin of Holland.

March 9: Abraham Roqueni vs. Artur Kyshenko - Enfusion Live Barcelona

This is a marquee match-up at 70kg. Roqueni is a solid, proven fighter while Kyshenko has been a mainstay around the top for years now.

March 9: Sahak Parparyan vs. Cesar Cordoba - Enfusion Live Barcelona

Two of the top 85kg fighters square off here. Cordoba hasn't fought top competition in a very long time but on skills and fighting prowess alon he's one of the better fighters in the division and should make for a competitive fight.

March 14: Sergio Wielzen vs. Alexei Blinov - Era of Champions

An unknown Russian up and comer gets to test himself against a name in the lighter weight divisions of kickboxing in Sergio Wielzen. Wielzen comes off a win over Sasa Jovanovic in December, so another win would help him further get back on track.

March 16: Karim Ghajji vs. Darko Delic - Explosion Fight Night 7

Karim Ghajji had his breakout performance last month when he beat stopped Aikpracha in the first round in the final of the La Nuit des Titans tournament. That was at 72.5kg, and this fight is at 78kg and will lead into Ghajji's big 77kg fight against Nieky Holzken at GLORY 6.

March 17: Masahiro Yamamoto vs. Karim Bennoui - RISE 92

This is a battle of two of kickboxing's top lighter weight fighters, with Bennoui being #2 and Yamamoto #3 on the LiverKick lightweight rankings.

March 17: Yasuomi Soda vs. Koji Yoshimoto - RISE 92

Here is a battle of two of Japan's top 65kg fighters that has been a long time in the making. It's for Yoshimoto's RISE 65kg title.

March 17: Chang Hyun Lee vs. Genji Umeno - RISE 92

This is a huge rematch from October when Lee rose up from being an unknown and shocked Genji Umeno in LiverKick's 2012 Fight of the Year.

March 20: Thomas Adamandopoulos vs. Hideaki Yamazaki - Krush.27

Both fighters come off losses here, but it's an interesting match-up nonetheless. Yamazaki was shockingly knocked out by Gagny Baradji in December while Adamandopoulos lost to Karim Bennoui in November.

March 20: Koya Urabe vs. Fumiya Osawa - Krush.27

This fight should be all Koya Urabe. The interesting part though is that he's dropping down to 60kg for it, a weight that might even suit him better.

March 30: Michael Wakeling vs. Pajonsuk Super Pro Samui - Enfusion Live London

Pajonsuk is making his return to the ring after quite a long time away, not having fought since the end of 2010. Michael Wakeling is the brother of Steve Wakeling and a very capable fighter in his own right. This should be an intriguing, competiive match-up.

Tournaments

March 14 - Era of Champions
60kg: Artur Isayants vs. Irakli Gvindliya
60kg: Konstantin Trishin vs. Avetik Petrosyan

March 16 - W5 Slovakia
71kg: Alim Nabiev vs. Tevfik Sucu
71kg: Hysni Beqiri vs. Vladimir Konsky

75kg: Vladimir Moravcik vs. Artem Litvinenko
75kg: Arjan Vatnikaj vs. Konstantin Serebrennikov

March 24 - Haarlem Fight Night IV
70kg: Anthony Kane vs. Kevin Hesseling
70kg: Armen Petrosyan vs. Robbie Hageman
70kg: Henri van Opstal vs. Nick Beljaards
70kg: William Diender vs. Maiki Karathanasis

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Giorgio Petrosyan vs. Ole Laursen Tomorrow, Live Stream

Today's the first day of March and with that begins a monster month for all things kickfighting. One of the first big fights to start off the month takes place tomorrow in Trieste, Italy and features the best kickboxer in the world, Giorgio Petrosyan taking on Ole Laursen.

Obviously this isn't the most competitive match-up to say but the least, but hey, the best kickboxer in the world is fighting. Petrosyan comes off winning the GLORY 3 Rome eight man tournament, defeating Ky Hollenbeck, Davit Kiria and Robin van Roosmalen in the process.

There's also a few other notable fights on the card. Right below the main event, Kaoponlek is back in action against Alessio D'Angelo. Kaoponlek, the 1995 Fighter of the Year in Thailand, comes off a decision win over Mehdi Zatout at Best of Siam 3 on February 14. Despite being around 36 and having lived in Italy for quite some time he's still fighting and winning on a regular basis.

Armen Petrosyan will also make his return to the ring, fighting Vaidas Valancius. As well, Slovenian up and comer Samo Petje fights the Italian veteran Sharos Huyer.

There will be a live stream of the event for 8 Euros here. The event starts at 22:30 local time in Italy, which is 4:30PM ET/1:30PM PT in North America.

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Dutch Kickboxing Legend Ramon Dekkers Passes Away at Age 43

DekkersA serious misfortune has struck the international Kickboxing and Muay Thai community as reports have surfaced that legendary Dutch striker Ramon "Diamond" Dekkers has passed away today at the young age of 43. Reports are coming out of his home town of Breda today that Dekkers was riding his bike when he collapsed in a tunnel after feeling light-headed. A few bystanders attempted to assist him before emergency services arrived and attempted to revive him to no avail.

Dekkers is a former 8-time world champion and one of the first Dutch Kickboxers to really make an impact in Thailand. He was instrumental in helping the sport of Kickboxing to evolve to what it is today and will always be remembered for his accomplishments in and out of the ring.

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6 Muay Thai Fighters That Would Make Great Kickboxers (And How Likely They Are To Switch Over)

Kickboxing and Muay Thai fans are typically cut from the same sort of cloth. While there are notable exceptions, both kickboxing enthusiasts and muay thai fanatics have a mutual respect for what the other side is doing. This is most evident in the bond that the two sports share in international competition- it's not uncommon for kickboxers to take a fight in muay thai and do well (See Karim Ghajji vs. Aikpracha) or vice versa (Too many examples to name, but Buakaw, Kem, and Artem Levin are MT practioners that have often competed at the highest level of kickboxing). 

It goes without saying that Muay Thai has a larger and more technically gifted talent pool than most of kickboxing, especially at lower weights. However, kickboxing is still one of the most exciting sports in the world and when two skilled athletes are trying to punch each other in the face, just about anything can happen. This is my very subjective list of 6 Thai Fighters that would make a seamless transition into the kickboxing ring. A few disclaimers to keep in mind before I start the countdown...

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1. This list is not in order of talent. It is numbered by who I would personally most like to see in a kickboxing promotion.

2. Thai's are hands down the best combat sports athletes on the planet. That being said, most of them probably won't make the transition over to kickboxing in the immediate future. If there's no reason to believe they'll switch sports, they won't be included on this list. 

3. I'm not including any Thai fighters that have extensively fought kickboxing in the past.

Ok, that's it! Let's go ahead and get right down to our first entry...

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#6- Simon Marcus

Chance of seeing him in kickboxing: Likely

Simon Marcus is what most people would call "on fire" right now. After going 6-0 in 2012 to add to his already unbeaten record, Marcus made an impression on American muay thai fans when he dispatched the always abrasive Joe Schilling twice in one year. If that wasn't enough, most recently Marcus competed in China where he scored two KO victories in the same night. Let's just be honest, the guy looks like a Greek God. He's terrifying. If Simon Marcus ever wanted to mug me all he'd need to do is glance in my general direction and my wallet would leave my pocket, sensing the prescence of an alpha male. 

Marcus was originally scheduled to make his kickboxing debut at GLORY 5 London against fellow Muay Thai practioner Steven Wakeling. However, he opted for a long awaited dream match-up with Artem Levin instead. While we may not see the Bwad Boy move to kickboxing as planned, there is a very high chance he'll make the transition sometime in the future. 

 Read More for the full list

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