Venda’s tradition -Musangwe- Bareknuckle championship makes its SA debut

THE Bareknuckle Fighting Championship, in partnership with South African eventing company, 2live Productions, has been green-lit to add combat sport bareknuckle fighting onto the South African sports and entertainment calendar.

Officially sanctioned by the Mixed Martial Arts Federation of South Africa, bareknuckle fighting has been taking the world of martial arts entertainment by storm since it’s reinvention in 2018 by Philadelphia-based President and former professional boxer David Feldman.

Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship (BKFC) is the first promotion allowed to hold a legal, sanctioned, and regulated bare knuckle event in the United States since 1889 and has subsequently been spreading like wildfire to over 40 countries. 

“Taking BKFC to Africa and adding South Africa to the list of countries hosting bareknuckle promotions is an exciting turn of events for us at BKFC. Africa is currently producing world class fighters and we are looking to create an exciting combat experience starting in South Africa. We look forward to bringing new fighters and new fans along for the ride”, Feldman states.

BKFC is the only legitimised organisation hosting varying weight-class fights – and raking in millions of viewers both online and in stadiums.   Co-owner and consultant Nelson Lopez Jr is excited about adding South Africa to the list of host countries. “Bringing the spirit of bareknuckle from the USA into Africa is not just about the thrill of the fight, it’s about uniting cultures, breaking boundaries, and showing the indomitable spirit that knows no borders. It will ignite a fire that will inspire generations to rise above limitations and embrace their true power,” he states.

This highly-charged, but fiercely regulated sport has been re-energising combat sports globally, and with trials aiming to be held in South Africa as soon as November 2023, the sport could find its way onto the local calendar of events as soon as February 2024.

“With an illustrious history in boxing and the Venda tradition of Musangwe, South Africa is a natural choice for BKFC to expand to. The talent on this continent just needs a strong partner, like BKFC to reach its full potential’, states Ferdinand Basson, President of the MMA South Africa Federation.

What exactly what are the rules of BKFC? 

–    Only established professionals in boxing, MMA, kickboxing, or Muay Thai will be allowed to compete.
–    No gloves – knuckles must be exposed, with wraps no closer than 1 inch to the knuckles.  
–    Fights entail 5 2-minute rounds to ensure fast-paced, exciting events.
–    The patented BKFC “Squared Circle” contains scratch lines, based on the Broughton Rules which governed bare knuckle fighting in the 19th century, requiring fighters to “Toe the Line”, meaning they start every round face to face, just inches apart.
–    Referees and judges will be required to have extensive professional combat sports experience.

Truly a sport of the future which fully respects its remarkable past, BKFC is dedicated to not just creating the safest, most exciting, highest level bare knuckle fighting organization in the world, but is also leading the way for a new, fully recognized professional combat sport. 

2Live Productions is excited about the launch. “In the world of combat sports, the future is bare-knuckled. South Africa and the world are about to witness a seismic shift in the fight game. It’s not just the next best thing; it’s the future we’ve all been waiting for. Keep your eyes peeled and watch this space, as bare-knuckle fighting redefines combat sports on a global scale”, the company states.


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