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SASCOC mourns loss of kick boxer

SASCOC this weekend mourned the loss of national kick-boxer Albert Wessels during a WAKO Senior World Championships event in Antalya, Turkey recently.

Wessels passed away after competing in the Light Contact and Kick Light categories. He collapsed near the end of the third round in the Kick Light category and was rushed to hospital immediately and operated on to relieve bleeding on the brain.

“It is with great sadness and shock that we hear this news,” said SASCOC President Mr Gideon Sam. “Kick-boxers are known to be extremely fit and robust athletes and this comes as a great shock. We wish his family, friends and his fellow sportsmen and women in the kick-boxing code, strength at this sad time.

“We also sincerely hope the the medical report will enable us to know what exactly happened.”

Said Louise Viviers, President of Martial Arts South Africa (MASA) in a statement. “After the operation Albert was kept in ICU and his family were notified of the incident. Arrangements were made by them to come to Antalya.”

A full investigation was conducted by WAKO (World Association of Kickboxing Organizations) and all officials and SA coaches made statements and nothing untowards was detected.

“Should this have happened in the full contact ring one can say that the incident was caused due to a number┬á of full contact punches and kicks to the head. The fact that it happened on the light contact tatami will remain┬á a mystery. Our two coaches who were coaching Albert are senior instructors and officials in the organization and would have most certainly stopped the bout should the WAKO rules not have been followed.

“The South African Team were very well supported by the Turkish Kickboxing Association, the hotel, the SA┬á Embassy in Ankara, the hospital and members of the SA delegation. We have decided to create a fund to assist the family in their need. Any financial assistance will be welcomed.”


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