Sentwali Woolridge has been slated to fight American Jaques Priera fighting out of Anderson's Martial Arts in New York on July 22nd at the very popular Muay Thai fighting event Friday Night Fights NYC.
Woolridge, representing Bermuda Sanshou Association (BSA), will be flying to New York with the President of the Organization Garon Wilkinson, who will act as coach and corner man for this event.
Woolridge was only informed that he would be fighting in the event a couple of weeks ago and has powered up his training regime for the huge opportunity that lies before him. The match will be a 3-round K-1 Kickboxing rules match and unlike his other 12 previous full contact matches, there will be no head gear worn in this match.
There will also be no shin protection. Although this is an amateur bout, the gear (or lack of gear) is exactly the same as the professional fighters. This is the first time that a BSA athlete has fought in a non-tournament event outside of Bermuda and the first time that any of the athletes have fought without headgear. This is certainly an opportunity to make an impression in the pursuit of becoming a professional in the near future.
Woolridge and Priera's bout will be a Light-Middleweight bout, with the agreed fighting weight being 165 pounds. Priera is definitely the taller fighter at a height of 6'2", compared to Woolridge's 5'10" so he will have to make the necessary adjustments to fight the bigger opponent.
Woolridge has been a member of BSA since 2006 and has represented Bermuda internationally in China, Brazil, Canada, the US, and Argentina, medaling on numerous occasions at various international championships. He has been showcased in both BSA's "FightFest" events and Jiketsu Martial Production's "Sanshou Showdown". He has only suffered one defeat on local soil.
Woolridge has been in the martial arts for a number of years and his initial art is jui-jitsu. Since debuting as a full contact fighter about 5 years ago, he has developed a reputation for being one of Bermuda's top fighters, certainly the best in his weight division.
The promoter liked what he saw of Woolridge and thought it would be great to feature him on the Friday Night Fights card. The July 22nd event will take place at Broad St. Ballroom in Manhattan. Doors open at 7:30 with the bouts commencing at 7. The weigh-in will take place the previous day. The event will also feature an 8-man tournament for 154 pounders where only one man will remain standing and be crowned champion. The events are always sold out and promises to be a very exciting fight card.
The event will be aired on Sports Network New York (SNY) on August 13, 20 and 27th and will also be aired on Bermuda Sports Network (BSN).
Woolridge's training has consisted of lots of sparring over the past weeks with his san shou team mates. He has also received an extra helping hand from the muay thai fighters at Skipper Ingham's Bermuda Karate Institute.
Woolridge has fought both the reigning Pan American from Brazil and European champion from Russia in san shou at 70kg and only narrowly lost to both opponents. He has proven that he could fight against the best in the world in his weight class.
The sparring has also been good for the other fighters who are preparing for Rumble on the Rock II, slated to take place on August 27th under the lights the Tennis Stadium.
The san shou squad is also in heavy training for the World Wushu Championships taking place in Ankara, Turkey October 6-15th.