2 New WBC Champions for Crawley


Crawley Thai boxer’s – Paulo Da Silva and Ruth Ashdown were crowned WBC Champions in front of a packed out home crowd last weekend.

Paulo Da Silva  (photo -Dave Fordisque )
Paulo Da Silva (photo -Dave Fordisque )
Ruth Ashdown (photo -Dave Fordisque )
Ruth Ashdown (photo -Dave Fordisque )















Ashdown and Da Silva took on French fighters for the Super-Flyweight World and Bantamweight International Titles under Full Muay Thai Rules which allow punches, kicks, knees and elbows to the head.

Ashdown started the first round slowly, moving around to get a measure of the French WBC European Title holder. Akounad started strong, landing a heavy kick and looking to make Ruth miss before countering with her own shots. By the end of the first round, the smart Ashdown had found a weakness in the French girls armour and started to land her own heavy punches. Looking confident Ashdown came out strong in the second round, threw a right hook and dropped the French girl to the canvas. The referee stopped the fight immediately and Ruth Ashdown was crowned the WBC Super-Flyweight World Champion, winning her third world title by knock out.

Pound Hills, Paulo Da Silva took on the WBC European Title holder, Mohamed Bouchareb from France. The French man had done his homework and started the fight with heavy left body kicks. After an even first two rounds, Da Silva stepped up the pressure in the third round, dropped the French man in the fourth round with a big left hook before hurting him with a straight right later in the same round. By the fifth round Da Silva was starting to pull away before winning the fight on a unanimous judge’s decision to take home Crawley’s second WBC title of the evening. A huge win for the exciting fighter who’s been fighting for the club for over 14 years now.

On the same card 9 other local fighters from the Crawley Martial Arts Academy fought. 10 year old Harvey White opened the show for the ISKA Junior Title winning the first title of the night for the club. Boxer, Paul Clarke took on Brighton’s Janusz Szeremeta winning on points.

(l-r) Harvey White with Paulo Da Silva
(l-r) Harvey White with Paulo Da Silva

Ifield’s Ben Hodge was on top form after a WMC World Title win in France last month. The 26 year old fought the taller Angelo Bernardoni from Rome and immediately started putting the Italian under pressure landing heavy kicks and setting up his punches. At the end of the first round Bernardoni went back to his corner shaking his head and was retired by his corner, Hodge winning.

WBC A-Sawyer3
Alan Sawyer,

Alan Sawyer, a coach at the gym was back in the ring for the first time for a year fighting Simone Curi from Italy. Sawyer started the first round well, finding his range early on, mixing up combinations of kicks punches and knees. Hurting his ribs with kicks, Sawyer continued to pressure the Italian before the referee stopped the contest in the third round, the home fighter victorious.

Fighting for the gym for the first time, Karl Langley took on Sutton’s Dave Zetolovsky under K1 Kickboxing rules. After an even first two rounds Langley started to relax and look more comfortable in the third. Backing Zetolovsky onto the ropes, Langley landing a jumping knee knocking out his opponent. Jonno Lambert fought under K1 rules losing out on points while Broadfield’s Asif Khan started strong but tiring towards the end of the fifth round lost by decision.

Jane Iske from West Green took on Amanda Stephenson from Darlington. The 23 year old who’s on the back of a Southern Area Title win stopped Stephenson in the first round with a vicious right punch. Keith McKenzie, the Jiu Jitsu instructor for the Academy fought for the first time under Muay Thai rules. Looking calm and composed the 33 year old took control of the ring, moved and scored well to win on a unanimous decision.

(L-R) Jane Iske with Ruth Ashdown
(L-R) Jane Iske with Ruth Ashdown

With 9 wins from 11 fights, the first WBC Show for the Crawley Martial Arts Academy was a huge success and added the female WBC World Title, the WBC International Title and ISKA Junior Title to the gym’s accolades.

For anyone interested in training for fitness or looking to compete you can get in touch with the Crawley Martial Arts Academy on 01293 552 511.



  1. It was a brilliant night. Thanks for your support as always, Shelly and the Crawley Happy Times. Always there and reporting on the events. I hope you had a great night and your readers enjoy hearing about more GOOD news in Crawley!

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