16 May 2021, Kiev, Ukraine: Many countries around the world have been impacted by COVID-19 with member federations having to postpone or cancel their tournaments.
Yet in GAMMA Ukraine’s recently concluded championships on Saturday at the Palace of Sports, they managed to bring over 500 competitors from the different regions of Ukraine together to compete at the Palace of Sports in Kiev, the nation’s capital.
The championships ended with the WWFC tournament, a professional mixed martial arts competition, where title belts were at stake, and brought much inspiration to the amateur athletes.
According to Volodymyr Teslia, President of the Ukrainian Federation of Mixed Martial Arts, he said,”We’ve been working extremely hard over the past few months to find the best solution for bringing back mixed martial arts in a safe and responsible way. This was made possible with the easing of COVID-19 restrictions in Ukraine.”
“It was not easy to organise such a large event as we had to run the matches simultaneously using five circles, but we wanted to ensure that we are sending the very best of Ukraine when participating in international GAMMA competitions, so we pushed hard.”
The participants competed in different weight categories and the age range was from 10 to 18 years old, and adults.
Odessa was the region that produced the largest number of winners with 13 golds, six silvers, and four bronzes. Kyiv and Dnipropetrovsk regions placed second and third respectively.
“It is a great feeling to know that there were gold medals won by athletes from almost all the participating regions which goes to show the development of mixed martial arts in Ukraine and a strong representation of martial arts in every region,” Volodymyr added.
The best athletes from the tournament were also selected to represent the national team of Ukraine for the upcoming GAMMA continental and international competitions: European and World Championships.
GAMMA President Alexander Engelhardt further added, “Our member federations have harnessed the mixed martial arts spirit during the pandemic by finding solutions to allow people to compete in the sport we all love. Through GAMMA Ukraine’s example, hosting an even with over 500 competitors, we want to provide hope to athletes around the world that competition in their home countries may not be too far away.
“We look forward to see our international friends, athletes, coaches and officials at the Asian and European Championships in the coming months.”