EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSMIXED MARTIAL ARTS
from Eyewitness News Online
First Legal MMA Event Set For Saturday
Reported by: Atish Baidya
Videographer: Tim Rock
Web Producer: Atish Baidya
Also Contributing: Chad Hypes
Reported: Jan. 6, 2012 8:34 AM EST
Charleston , Kanawha County , West Virginia
Mixed Martial Arts fighting in West Virginia won't just be practice matches this year instead full blown state sanctioned matches.
After years of legal jiujitsu, the first official event will be held Saturday in Williamson.
"I've been fighting to make it legal since 2001," promoter Butch Hiles said. "It has taken 10 years. Its been a tough battle. We didn't know if we were going to win it but it is finally legal."
Twenty fighters will enter the octagon at the Williamson Field House for the history making event. For promoters, it is a chance to finally showcase local talent right here at home.
"For the first time ever we get to be the hometown hero," Hiles said. "They [opponents] get to come to our place, fight in front of our fans, in front of our people and it is really exciting."
For the fighters the honor is priceless.
"It is just such a huge opportunity to fight in my home state," Billy Ayash said.
So on Saturday, MMA will finally get a fighting chance in the Mountain State.
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