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Way has his sights on gold

Daniel Way in fine-tuning his fighting style and at the weekend he won a silver medal at the Grappling Tournament Australia No Gi Jiujitsu Australian Championships.

MATTHEW GALEA February 4, 2014 4:10am

Coach Jason Farren, Daniel Way and Kye Hardie were in the thick of it at the Grappling Tournaments Australia 2014 No Gi Jiujitsu Australian Championships.


Daniel Way wants some mixed martial arts gold come the end of the year, and to do so he’s building up the complete game plan.

‘‘Grasshopper’’ is an accomplished striker after eight years of Muay Thai training, but it is his increasing proficiency in jiujitsu that should have opponents worried, particularly after his silver medal performance at the Grappling Tournaments Australia No Gi Jiujitsu Australian Championships at the weekend in the Super Heavy category.

‘‘It was a good start to 2014,’’ Wright said.

‘‘I’ve been training in jiujitsu for about two years and I’ve only started with Jason (Farren, head coach at the Real MMA gym) for the last seven months and he’s really stepped up my game.

‘‘Jiujitsu is a part of MMA, and it’s probably the weakest part of my game because I’m a striker, so I’m starting to round myself out with it and these comps let me gauge where I’m at.’’

In that respect, the weekend’s result was hugely encouraging for Way.

‘‘I actually hadn’t been training for jiujitsu fights, I had been training for a Muay Thai fight that fell through and I just took this on last minute,’’ Way said.

Way fought three fights, including the final where he lost to Hunter Valley fighter Marc Grayson, winning two.

Way said his focus now would return to MMA.

‘‘I’m looking to go strictly pro-MMA now, I’ve already had six fights for four wins,’’ Way said.

‘‘I just want to step up more and more and go interstate a bit more, after going to Darwin and Perth last year, so hopefully I can do that and get an MMA title by the end of the year.’’

Way has already had two fights with the country’s top MMA body, the Australian Fighting Championships.

‘‘That’s where they get guys from for things like the Ultimate Fighter,’’ Way said.

‘‘I actually fought two guys that were in the Ultimate Fighter house last year in Vik (Grujic) and Daniel (Kelly).’’

Real MMA trainer Farren said Way’s progress in jiujitsu had been good leading into the tournament, but was also proud of the efforts of Kye Hardie, who went into his first tournament on the back of only three months’ training.

He won his first fight against Shane Byrne before bowing out of the tournament in the second round against Petar Alvanja.

‘‘He jumped in and had his first match ever and got a win straight off the bat, so after three months that’s fantastic and that’s the sort of level we’re producing,’’ Farren said.

Farren said the growth of the one-year-old club had been encouraging, hinting that big things were set to come in coming months.

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