SHAPING UP: Solace Muay Thai gym in Ballina preparing for its Fight Night at Kirra this weekend.
SHAPING UP: Solace Muay Thai gym in Ballina preparing for its Fight Night at Kirra this weekend. Contributed

Solace club is ready to rumble

MUAY THAI: Eighteen members of the Solace Muay Thai gym in Ballina will compete in the club's Fight Night at Kirra Sports Club, Coolangatta, on Saturday night.

The first running of the event is being held on the Gold Coast, with Cherry Street bowling club to host the second event in Ballina early next year.

There will be weigh-ins as a pre-fight event at the bowling club tomorrow night at 6.30pm, with competitors coming from Adelaide, Gold Coast and Sydney for the Saturday show.

Solace Muay Thai gym owner and event organiser Spiro Darzanos has built the night from scratch with Gold Coast promoter Nick Atkins.

He was thrilled to have so many members of his Ballina gym competing.

Most of them will be fighting for the first time having just completed a 10-week challenge.

"There's been blood, sweat and a lot of tears,” he said.

"They're not quite there yet but they've just about completed something pretty special.

"We've got a professional main event with Jemma Lee Byard in her 13th fight as a pro.

"She actually started out as a first time challenger at one of these events so it will be pretty cool for our guys to see that.

"Our whole concept is aimed at getting a show like this to Ballina and making sure we bridge the gap between Gold Coast and Sydney.

"It will be great for Ballina when we find our feet with a show early next year and it can be something the whole region can get behind.”

Solace members John Slade and Alex Ziedan will fight later in the night having already competed in the ring.

"John will be on before the main event; he's only 16 and he's stepping up to take on a 23-year-old,” Darzanos said.

"He has another fight in Brisbane in a few weeks and will be fighting full Muay Thai rules for the first time here.

"The whole idea is to be able to get these guys competing in front of their friends and family and showing them what they can do.”

Tickets can be purchased at https://events.ticketbooth .com.au/event/Ballina-fight- challenge

The show is scheduled to start at 7.30pm (NSW time).