Thursday, 10 October 2013

Anderson Silva Visits the UK

On Wednesday, September 11th, a momentous day in history occurred. Anderson Silva returned to the UK for the first time in roughly ten years. After fighting in Cage Rage, which boosted him into the limelight and the attention of the UFC, Anderson stopped through to do a few appearances at local gyms.

Stumping up a modest fee of £200 initially (which later rose to £400/£500), this seminar at Urban Kings Gym was definitely an event to be seen at. Unsurprisingly, since he had just got off a flight, Anderson was running a little late, and a bunch of people were tentatively waiting for him to arrive. Everyone was talking and getting to know one another, when Anderson walked in; everyone paused, as he had such a presence. He looked at all of us and jokingly said "Hey guys, where's the training?!" in his instantly recognisable voice.

The next hour featured a lengthy media session, with journalists and fans from all over asking questions, mainly about his rematch with Chris Weidman, what went wrong in his last fight, and what his plans were regarding Roy Jones Jr., which he said is one of his dreams, so expect that in the pipeline very soon, as long as Uncle Dana permits it!

After the media session, we took to practice. Unfortunately, due to UFC politics, Anderson wasn't allowed to actually train with any of us properly, but he did show us some techniques. Me, being the fanboy that I am, jumped in at every opportunity I could. I got him to show me his clinch work, the technique for the front kick with Vitor, and what he likes to do on the ground.

It was basically a chance to meet a down to earth, humble human being. It was great and everything, but for what we got to do, I'm not sure it would have been worth £200, seeing as it was shorter than expected. But the best part came the next day, when Urban Kings told me that everyone who paid would get refunded! Owner Pierre Andurand decided he would use this opportunity to treat the members and staff out of the kindness of his heart, which was a fantastic gesture in itself, and everyone who attended got a goody bag, which had MMA gloves and a cap, which was also a nice added touch.

Overall, the seminar was a well hosted event with a brilliant guest of honour. Urban Kings pulled out all the stops to make Anderson feel welcome on his return, and I've heard a few other gyms did not do the same, so well done to everyone who helped out there that night!

I wish Anderson all the luck in his rematch with Chris Weidman on Dec. 28th.

Also, please check out, or you can find them on Facebook or Twitter as well. Thanks for hosting a great event guys!

By Dan Lloyd (@DRL1990)

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