In what is unfolding to be a whirlwind day in the world of Irish Mixed Martial Arts with Conor McGregor’s latest ‘retirement’ statement taking the twitter-sphere by storm, another statement has been made which poses similarly heavy connotations for Irish MMA.
Minister Michael Ring has released a statement via RTE in which he confirmed that he has reached out to the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation after they requested a meeting; declaring his intention to meet with the Irish Amateur Pankration Association (who are officially recognised under the IMMAF) in an attempt to make strides towards regulating MMA within the state.
At first the two government representative bodies Ring and ‘Sport Ireland’ were hesitant to meet each other following Joao Carvahlo’s death two days after TEF 1. However a huge push by the public has cornered the two bodies into a meeting with the aim of acknowledging MMA as a sport so that more prudent fight-night measures and precautions may be implemented in the hope of preventing such a devastating catastophe from incurring again.
Minister Ring’s statement in full reads:
“Further to the sad and tragic passing of Mr Joao Carvalho, and contact having been made with me by the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF) in recent days, I have today contacted the IMMAF with a view to meeting with that organisation at its earliest convenience.
“I would welcome an opportunity to understand the IMMAF’s perspectives on the issues that Mr Carvalho’s passing has raised. In particular, I would welcome the views of the IMMAF on appropriate measures to safeguard the health of participants in Mixed Martial Arts events.”
SBG coach and president of IAPA John Kavanagh also released a statement today in relation to the current regulation of the sport in the country:
“Yesterday a positive preliminary meeting took place between Minister Michael Ring, a representative of Sport Ireland, Professor Dan Healy and senior civil servants.
The predominant purpose of the meeting was to assess the future of Mixed Martial Arts in the state with particular attention paid to regulation and potential safety measure improvement.