MMA Athletes across Oceania are beginning to arrive in New Zealand ahead of the two-day 2023 Oceania Championships taking place in Auckland this weekend.
Athletes from Australia, Cook Islands, Fiji, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga and Tuvalu will join a large contingent of New Zealand Athletes for the first GAMMA continental event of 2023 which will take place at the renowned Due Drop Event Centre.
The 200 hundred athletes will undergo weigh-ins, medical checks, and rule meetings on Friday before the Action in the ring gets underway from lunchtime on Saturday.
GAMMA has one again announced that the best male and female MMA and Striking MMA athletes at the 2023 GAMMA Oceania Championships will be rewarded with an opportunity to compete at a ONE Friday Fights event (previously known as ONE Lumpinee). This opportunity was first given at the 2022 GAMMA Asian-Pacific Championships and was a fantastic added incentive for athletes competing in Thailand, and it is expected that these places will once again be highly sought after.
This event marks the first-ever GAMMA international competition to take place in the southern hemisphere and interest is set to be high from local media as MMA is growing in popularity and attracting more attention than ever.
“It is fantastic to be in New Zealand and for GAMMA to stage a Continental Championships in Oceania for the first time. Sport plays such an important role in the culture of many of the participating countries and it is a fantastic opportunity to showcase and celebrate the very best talent of our sport in the southern hemisphere. I would like to thank the organisers in Auckland for their hard work in planning the event and I look forward to a great two days of competition,” said GAMMA President Alexander Engelhardt.
With Australia and New Zealand boasting the largest delegations, the neighboring countries are sure to have some great battles across many of the weight categories as they challenge to finish top of the medals table come Sunday night.
Some names to watch out for include:
Inna Leniu from Samoa
Courtney Martin from Australia
Hayellom Tesfay from New Zealand
Harrison Smith from Australia
Markell Alaiasa from Samoa
The official opening ceremony is set for 10:00 local time (00:00 CET) on Saturday, to be followed by the first day of competition beginning from 12:00 (02:00 CET).