WEEKEND RESULTS (02/03/2018 – 04/03/2018)

The Absolute MMA team started March with a bang, with four fighters from the gym stepping into the ring at Roots 6: Natural Mystic/Rebellion Muay Thai 18: Return of The Weapon on Saturday, 3rd of March 2018.

Gracie Astill-Torchia kicked things off for the team on Roots 6, fighting against Lucy Duvnjak.
Having gone through an incredibly hard fightcamp that left her a little depleted, Gracie came forward, gaining strength as the rounds progressed and pushed hard to grind out a win via UPD against a talented opponent. Congratulations on continuing your winning streak Gracie!

James White was up next in the ring, fighting against a tough opponent with significant reach on him. Despite a loss via SPD James fought hard and we couldn’t be prouder of the determination he showed. Well done James!

Headlining Roots 6, Albert “Timorese Assassin” faced off against Sulamin Hashemi in the main event of the card. Alby fought a great battle, but didn’t get the result wanted in a close decision via SPD. Can’t wait to see Alby back in the ring stronger than ever for the experience gained!

With Roots over for the Day, Rebellion Muay Thai 18 began at 6pm, with Joe “Smokin Joe” Coverdale fighting second on the card against Angus McLennan. Joe displayed great technique and had a lot of fun in the ring against a strong opponent, unfortunately coming out with a loss via SPD.

On Sunday, four of our Absolute MMA Boxing team members went to St Albans to fight at the VAMAA Interclub.

Dushan Oshin Lankaputhra Wanniarachchige, Juen How Low (Jacky) and Daniel Morandin all won their bouts, with Aneira Connell’s bout resulting in a draw. All members of our boxing team showed improved technique, with Coach Pradeep Sihag “The Indian Warrior” noting “the highlight of the day was (the) straight right hand punch from each boxer”. Congratulations to all of you on your hard work!

Photo Credits: William Luu Fight Photography & Pradeep Sihag Singh


We have many amazing people with interesting stories that walk into all our gyms! The member spotlight turns to Kyle Morgan aka Kyle “KP” Morgz, long term member (since the yellow mat era) at Absolute MMA.

Occupation: UX Research & Design Manager

Martial Arts/Sports: Mixed Martial Arts

How did you get into the sport?
“I actually blame Bruce Lee, Van Damme & Chuck Norris really, at an early age they inspired me to start Martial Arts. I did Karate and Japanese Jiu-Jitsu from a very early age into my teens, then I discovered skating, girls and parties and took some time off. A few years on I still had this innate desire to train and be a white Bruce Lee so I decided it was time to get back into Martial Arts. So I decided to do something that was actually effective, so here I am.”
What are your immediate training goals?
“There are two things I really like to do: whoop ass and look good. I’m doing one of them right now and each week when training, I’m doing the other.”
What are your goals for the next five years?
“Training wise; Train, compete and advance in BJJ as much as possible – its addictive. Maintain my striking and hopefully compete again.”
Why do you love training at Absolute MMA?
“I think its been around 6 years of training here now, but ultimately because the family/community feel here is incredible. I’ve made some great friends and met some amazing people. It’s a great feeling when you’ve just finished work and you walk into the club and see multiple mates and can train together. The staff and coaches are world class also, which is why we have remained the great environment we are.”
What is your favourite move?
“Left hook or jab, the jab is totally underrated in MMA, and anything leg lock related for grappling at this stage.”
What do you like to do to relax besides training?
“Relax….say what? I work full time, study, train and try to keep my wife happy haha, its a fine juggle. Training relaxes me to be honest, that post training feeling is great.”
Who are the kind of people that you look up to and why?
“Someone who comes from nothing or with odds against them, and makes something of themselves and or improves their life. Kudos to those who don’t use excuses, have vision and self belief.”
If you could go back in time to your first martial art class, what would be the advice you give to your past self?
“I remember my first MMA Class with Gustavo (Yellow Mat days), and having very little preparation and going straight into sparring – WOW, my advice would be remember to BREATHE. Also I should have taken up Gi BJJ long before I did, so I would go back and convince myself Gi’s are cool and started earlier.”

“When I think of Kyle, one quote comes to mind ‘I don’t call 9-1-1, I call on 4-1-1 – giddy up, bitches!’.” – Brenton McKiterick, 


Well done to our four champs who pushed themselves at VAMAA last week! You all showed off your technique and did us proud. We can’t wait to see you all learn and grow even more from this experience, and get back in there once again.

1. Jordan Smart win via majority
Jordan and his opponent stood in front of each other and traded bombs for the whole fight. A well deserved win for Jordan with Coach Liam McNeill saying he’d “Never seen so many right hands landed before in a fight.”

2. Jordan Nathaniel loss via points
Jordan fought a much taller opponent with significant reach and did very well to defend, managing to land multiple sweeps throughout all the rounds. A close match with great technique displayed by Jordan!

3. Chris Burrows win via points
Super fast hands from Chris in this fight! An extremely dominant performance from Chris from rounds 1 through to, and a well deserved win despite getting in trouble in the clinch a couple of times.

4. Ryan Gilder loss via points
Ryan gilder utilized his footwork and boxing in this fight against a tough opponent. Despite copping a fair few knees to the gut, it was clear that Ryan was having fun with a big smile on his face throughout the whole fight. Good on you for getting in there Ryan!

Thanks to everyone who came to support and help out on the night!

(Photo credit: Liam McNeill)


Thank you to all of our staff, supporters, participants and their coaches/teams for coming down and working with us to make ROGUE 2 the successful day it was last weekend!

We were lucky enough to have over 200 patrons in attendance and would like to congratulate everyone who fought and competed on their hard work and dedication. It was great to see you all leaving it in the octagon, and whether you came to win or learn we know you will all take this experience and come back once again stronger than ever! Thank you all for being a part of ROGUE 2.


1. Brendan Thomas (Resilience Training Centre) vs. Tommy Keating (Pro Fitness MMA) 77kg – WINNER Tommy Keating via unanimous decision

2. Troy Fumo (Joe Donehue Jiu-Jitsu & MMA) vs. Finnian Kinsella (Absolute MMA) 55kg – WINNER Troy Fumo via rear naked choke

3. Pece Naumovski (Emerge MMA) vs. Rob Pelle (Absolute MMA) 66 kg – WINNER Rob Pelle via rear naked choke

4. Tekhron Radjabov (Pro Fitness MMA) vs. Wade Kelly (Absolute MMA) 72kg – WINNER Wade Kelly via unanimous decision

5. Joel Zetzmann (Adrenaline MMA) vs. Choi Sung Wook (Absolute MMA) 77kg – WINNER Choi Sung Wook via split decision

6. Sam Hopper (Resilience Training Centre) vs. Isaiah Mebrhatu (Pro Fitness MMA) 84kg – WINNER Sam Hopper via unanimous decision

7. Mat Myers (Adrenaline MMA) vs. Kevin Jousset (Absolute MMA) 82kg – WINNER Kevin Jousset via TKO (Round 1, 2:40)

Absolute MMA Thailand – Update #1

We are super proud to update you all on how our newest location Absolute MMA Thailand is progressing and share the beginning of our journey in Thailand!

Our mission over the last couple of weeks has been to take an old, pre-loved Muay Thai gym on the beautiful island that is Phuket, and turn it into a world class MMA facility featuring authentic Thai-style Muay Thai training. It has not been easy, but it has been an experience! The old adage applies- “Nothing worth having is ever easy.”

One of the most defining characteristics of Absolute MMA Thailand is the enormous lion’s head set on top of the building, which surprisingly is not visible from the main road at all. There really is no understating just how enormous this lion’s head is…trust us, we ain’t lion-ing! We’re incredibly lucky to have such a big, beautiful Thai-style open air facility with 4 raised rings and a row of bags hanging along both sides. Boasting 10 en-suite bungalows of on-site accommodation (car access available), Absolute MMA Thailand is the perfect place for your training camp!

We have a great location in Rawai that is based right on the doorstep of Phuket’s famous Nai Harn Beach and all the beautiful sunset lookouts that go with it are less than a 10 minute scooter ride away. If you feel like mixing it up, you can head 10 minutes in the other direction and visit the Siam, Katathani, Kata and Karon beaches on the west coast.

Located towards the southern end of Phuket, Rawai is not too crowded even in the high tourist season, and the perfect spot for avoiding hustle and bustle. The most popular restaurants might be busy for an hour or so each day, but there are plenty of gems off the beaten track. We are lucky enough to be surrounded by a wonderful community, who are never without a smile, and never forget a face (as well as your favourite food order!).

Rawai has everything you’d expect from an island getaway and is super easy to navigate. Before long, you’ll have your favourite Thai food places, and will know all the air conditioned coffee spots. Roadside fried chicken carts also consistently appear out of nowhere with impeccable timing and 7-Eleven and Family Marts sell long-necks for less than $2, if you’re after a casual beverage! For those who are looking to indulge, there are a handful of good bars, a night market that runs regularly and one nightclub that opens at 5pm called Laguna. Other nearby businesses include:

  • Recovery spas with saunas and floatation tanks
  • Massage parlours
  • Hairdressing salons
  • Hardware store

If you are looking to explore further up the island of Phuket there is the infamous Bangla Road, the majestic Big Buddha, the enormous Weekend Night Markets, and beautiful secluded tropical islands for you to explore.

Thankfully the hard work of selecting our core group of Thai trainers is complete, and we could not be happier with our team! Not only are our trainers extremely experienced and accomplished retired fighters, they are also well connected to the stadiums in Phuket with one of them being a part-time promoter, and another being a high level referee. This gives our fighters the best chance at appearing in fairly-scored, and well-matched fights in the biggest stadiums on the island.

Joe Boobyer of Absolute MMA deserves a very special mention here. Joe spent almost 6 years living and fighting in Phuket and well known in the local community. Without his in-depth knowledge of the culture and the trust that the locals have in him, assembling our team of friendly, connected and skilled trainers would not have been possible. He spent a week on his bike riding around to all of his old trainers and managers houses, asking who was working where, and who was in need of a job. We have been incredibly lucky to have such a diplomatic envoy with local knowledge who could ensure no feathers were ruffled. Not an easy thing to do when many of the locals have been fighting and working as trainers for various gyms in the area for over ten years. Many of his conversations were had over food, beer and even some after riding past a familiar face in the street, and conducted with good intentions and integrity. Thank you Joe!

There is still a lot to do at the gym and we have been busy getting the bungalows ready so people can come and stay on site and be able to prepare for fights (or the beach) in Thailand. Currently, we have construction workers here removing one of the rings to make room for a huge Brazilian jiu-jitsu/wrestling matted area, and soon there will be an octagon and a weights room added too. Work is in progress and the whole team is excited to be able to modernize Lion Muay Thai while paying respect to the past, under the new name of Absolute MMA Thailand. We have aimed to retain the spirit of Lion Muay Thai, with two out of three of our Thai trainers having worked here when Lion was first built. It has been known to be one of the most popular gyms on the island, and we want to make sure we carry on that legacy!

We look forward to providing you all with yet another world class facility in yet another beautiful location. We’ll be sure to keep you up to date with all the changes going on around here.

Stay tuned for another installation of the Absolute MMA Thailand story!

Additions to the timetable at all three locations!

Changes and additions to the timetables in all three locations!

St Kilda: The morning BJJ schedule now has Monday and Wednesday 6.30AM gi classes with Lachlan Warne and Tuesday and Thursday no-gi classes with Craig Jones (note there is no Friday morning class anymore!). Craig will also be taking a 7.15PM No-Gi class on Wednesday night and the 6.00PM Thursday class with Lachlan Giles has been switched to a gi class.

We have extended the MMA program with 1.5 hours of classes on Monday and Wednesday from 6.00PM with Jordan Lucas.

Joe Boobyer will now also be taking evening Muay Thai classes on Monday and Wednesday nights from 7.30PM.

CBD: Due to popular demand we have a new Functional Strength class on Saturday with Mo.

Collingwood: We have a new Women’s Gi Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu on Saturday with Apryl Eppinger and Craig Jones will be taking an Advanced No-Gi class on Tuesday nights from 7.30PM.

A lot there to get your head around so check the website or your Absolute MMA app for more details!

WEEKEND RESULTS (12/01/2018 – 14/01/2018)

Coach Livia Gluchowska started the weekend off for the team at Fight to Win Pro 58 in Sacramento, California. After an opponent change in late December, Liv was matched up against Pati Fontes Tinley in a IBJJF World No-Gi Championships rematch!

Liv fought hard, continuing to attack guillotines and finished the fight with a close heel hook/knee bar and a loss via referee decision. It has been amazing to see the improvement in Liv’s Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu since Worlds, and we are excited to see what 2018 brings for her!

Coach Lachlan Giles from Absolute MMA St Kilda also made waves overseas, making it through to the final of the Abu Dhabi Jiu-Jitsu Grand Slam in the Male Adult Black Belt (77kg). It was a close, gritty final with Lachlan eventually coming away with a silver medal for his efforts. Congratulations Lachie, you are a great representative for both Absolute MMA and the Australian Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu scene and we are very lucky to have you on our team! Amazing to see Lachlan continuing to improve and rise to such a high level!

Absolute MMA also had a formidable team this weekend at Grappling Industries Melbourne Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu competition.

With over 20 competitors the team had a great showing taking medals from the beginner to advanced level. We’re very happy with everyone who competed under the Absolute banner and left their heart on the mat!

It was great to see members from all three gyms competing and receiving medals for all their hard efforts, all of you were great representatives of Absolute MMA and we can’t wait to see you all in future competitions!

As a team we also had the massive achievement of taking out first place for both Adults Gi and Adults No-Gi. Go team!

(Photo credits: Lachlan Giles, Lachlan Warne, Sarah Chapman & Stephanie Scipione)


Receptionist Darren “Daz/Dazzdawg” Gn is not just the occasional stand in coach for classes, but also a stand up guy. With a fight record in Mixed Martial Arts of 1:2 and in K1/Muay Thai of 2:1, Darren is just getting starting in his fight career and we can’t wait to see what 2018 brings for him. Have you ever had a really animated pad holder who yells every time you hit the pads? When Darren is on the mats at Melbourne CBD, you better believe everyone else knows he’s there too. Read on to find out a little more about our in-house energizer bunny who is always up for a laugh at the desk and how he got started with the gym!

What would you consider your greatest achievements in Martial Arts?
“I consider each and every time that I’ve stepped into a cage/ring to compete to be a great achievement, regardless of the result or level.”

What made you start Martial Arts?
“I’ve loved anything to do with fighting and martial arts all my life. This love mainly started from growing up watching Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan and Jet Lee movies.”

How did you first get involved with Absolute MMA? (What industry were you in prior to Martial Arts? What made you change?)
“I had not participated in any martial arts training for about 6 years (I quit Japanese Jiu-jitsu soon after I received my black belt). Then one of my friends asked me to come try out a session at a gym his brother worked at. I decided to go, and then never stopped rocking up. A few months later, I was offered a job as a receptionist. This turned out to be the best thing that could have happened to me; allowing me to train for free, meet legends in the sport, learn about martial arts on the job, meet amazing people and learn about injuries which is relevant to the University degree I am currently undertaking – Osteopathy.”

Mantra/Quote to live by?
“We’re here for a good time, not a long time!”

Who are the kind of people that you look up to and why?
“It’s the people who lack raw, natural talent that I look up to the most. I often witness people come in who look like they are hating life about 30 seconds into the warm up. Yet these people continue to rock up and claw their way through each session. It is this grit that I respect the most because watching these people overcome obstacles is truly an amazing thing.”

If you could go back in time to your first martial art class, what would be the advice you give to your past self?
“Keep going! Pain is temporary, quitting is forever.”

“If only Darren was the standard for the Y generation the world would be a far better place.” – Jeremy Wharerau
“Would KO/10” – Fei Yen, long time friend and training partner
“Still hasn’t dropped me in sparring” – Andre Nguyen
“Remember Darren – article 22!” – Richard Lattemagi
“He’s a hard working young man. He always want to learn new things, he’s a good listener. If he keeps on learning and listening, he will be my next champion. I chose him as my best Student of the Year this year because of his hard work in his two fights this year. He deserved it and will only improve his game more from here.” – Laos Toohey 


We have many amazing people with interesting stories that walk into all our gyms! The member spotlight turns to Youngho Kim aka Rhylie "MAD KOREAN" Kim, much beloved and long term member of Absolute MMA.

Occupation: Metal Fabricator

Martial Arts/Sports: Judo, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Wrestling. 

How did you get into the sport?

"When I was a little boy, someone bullied my cause I was small and looked weak, I was a typical victim in school so I needed protect myself."

What are your immediate training goals?

"Show and prove my grappling and overcome my weakness."

What are your goals for the next five years?

"To be BJJ brown belt ? Or Freestyle judoka?"

Why do you love training at Absolute MMA?

"Because there are many lovely people at AMMA."

What is your favourite move?

"Walking on tread mill with good songs"

Can you tell us about where you're from and any interesting stories growing up? If you're not originally from Melbourne, how'd you end up living in Melbourne, Australia?

"1. From South Korea 2. After learnt Judo I smashed school bully (revenge) 3. Military service 2 years as a Marine (Republic of Korea Marine corps) 4. The story which living in Judo university ? Which one do you want ? Hahaha.

When I was 28 years old I just came in Australia as a working holiday visa holder. I was a real -old- boring Korean who always talking about Money but one day when I was in office I really wanted escape this life in Korea! Working -Home -working-home it was my daily routine. So I just got that visa and came in Australia."

Who are the kind of people that you look up to and why?

"Peter v vella or David rescai ? Because they don't have enemy I meant everyone loves them so I want be like them."

What's your favourite place to eat in Melbourne and your #1 dish recommendation?

"Hungry Jack's!"

If you could go back in time to your first martial art class, what would be the advice you give to your past self?

"Don't do judo mate! Study hard! Don't sleep in class!! Kidding...don't do seoi na ge on the street! Because that boy who bullied you broken his shoulder! Don't use it when fight boy! Patience!"

"Rhylie is the (un)official mascot of Absolute MMA. I believe the best way to describe Rhylie would be by his own famous quote - 'I am from South Korea - not North Korea. Remember me!'." - Richard Lattemagi

"Rhylie has been a much loved character within the gym for years. I first got to know him when he volunteered as a judo coach back in 2013. He was extremely generous with his time and remember that he really put his all into those classes, despite the fact that he spoke very little English at the time. Since then he has brought countless friends through the gym and is a huge ambassador for us in the Korean community. He is a staple at all gym social events and is a truly entertaining wildcard in the Absolute Fight Team. The special place he holds within the gym was felt when he was forced to leave Australia unexpectedly due to issues with his visa. Many tears were shed thinking that we were losing him, although all of those tears were actually Rhylie's. Thankfully, with some well placed bribes, his visa situation has been resolved and we are proud to have him back as comic relief within the gym." - Daniel Herbertson, see above photograph from the time of Rhylie leaving Australia. 

Photo Credit: Richard Lattemagi & Darren Gn