Special to The Observer



VALDOSTA -- Three Moultrie martial artists will compete to support the Valdosta Food Bank in the International Kickboxing Federation's South East Regional to be held on Saturday at the Lowndes Civic Center/Fairgrounds.

Jeff Williams will return to the ring to retain his title of IKF South East Regional Full Contact Rules Kickboxing Welterweight Champion.

He will face Walter Barbour of Atlanta in an American rules (above-the-waist kicking) kickboxing match.

Williams was a competitor in the 2001 East Coast Badman competition held in Waycross. He was also the 1999 Georgia State Professional Karate Commission Tournament Series Adult Grand Champion, earning this title through being Champion in Adult Brown Belt Kata, Lightweight Adult Brown Belt Sparring, Lightweight Adult Grappling and Lightweight Adult Submission Sparring.

Super Heavyweight Richard Cox will make his ring debut this Saturday.

This cook at Chicago Pizza at will face Brad Baker of Athens in the first round of the Muay Thai Rules (leg kicks and knees allowed) kickboxing tournament division.

Should he be victorious, he will move on to face David Beach of Raleigh, N.C.

Cox began his training as a serious fight fan by actually studying fight tapes.

Brian Doyle, an area welder and brother-in-law of Cox, also will make his debut in a Mixed Martial Arts/No Holds Barred match. He will face Jay Carter of Valdosta in this Ultimate Fighting style match that allows kickboxing, wrestling and submission moves.

James Corbett, owner of Valdosta Martial Arts Center and the Moultrie fighters' trainer, said that Williams has been a stalwart on the Georgia fight scene for years and when not fighting, he supports other fighters and fight promotions.

Corbett called Cox and Doyle "talented newcomers" to Valdosta Martial Arts Center.

"We can expect good things from them in the future," he said.

Valdosta Martial Arts Center is sponsoring the event this weekend.

The International Kickboxing Federation holds a National tournament annually that crowns amateur champions in Muay Thai, International and Full Contact kickboxing rule styles.

A number of regional tournaments are held around the country to qualify competitors for the National tournament.

Entry is open to competitors 8 years old and up, both male and female.

The Southeastern Regional tournament is open to competitors from Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee and Alabama.

This event is being held in part to support the Valdosta Food Bank.

Fans attending will receive a reduced admission price for their donation of canned or dry food items at the door.

These items will be used by the Valdosta Food Bank to care for the needy.

For more information on the IKF South East Regional see http://www.valdostamac.com/regional.html or see http://www.ikfkickboxing.com/.



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