Monday, 19 March 2012

South African MMA by Province

The sport of Mixed Martial Arts is growing rapidly across South Africa, this is unquestionable, but where within our country’s borders is the most growth happening? This question is hard to answer. Firstly we need to define growth. Is it the overall number of people participating the sport? Is it the number of MMA events being held? Or is it the quality of the MMA fighters being produced?

In line with volumes of practitioners and events, Gauteng by sheer virtue of the population size must be the front runner. For the purpose of this article however, I have looked at the top professionals as a synechdoche for the province, and in doing so I hope to determine where the most talented MMA fighters are being produced. This will give us a closer idea as to where the South African MMA talent is best being nurtured.

Building further on this rather outrageous theory, I have used my recently released South African MMA Rankings to acquire a sample size of 30 of the top South African fighters, the top 5 from each division. In the case where fighters have relocated within the last year, their former provinces apply.

Here are my findings:

Eastern Cape MMA fighters overall stats:
EFC Champions in Eastern Cape
Percentage of Champions in Eastern Cape
Top fighters in Eastern Cape
Percentage of Top fighters in Eastern Cape
Eastern Cape fighter’s stats
Eastern Cape fighter’s win percentage

Gauteng MMA fighters overall stats:
EFC Champions in Gauteng
Percentage of Champions in Gauteng
Top fighters in Gauteng
Percentage of Top fighters in Gauteng
Gauteng fighter’s stats
Gauteng fighter’s win percentage

Kwazulu-Natal MMA fighters overall stats:
EFC Champions in Kwazulu-Natal
Percentage of Champions in Kwazulu-Natal
Top fighters in Kwazulu-Natal
Percentage of Top fighters in Kwazulu-Natal
Kwazulu-Natal fighter’s stats
Kwazulu-Natal fighter’s win percentage

Western Cape MMA fighters overall stats:
EFC Champions in Western Cape
1 – Ruan Potts
Percentage of Champions in Western Cape
Top fighters in Western Cape
Percentage of Top fighters in Western Cape
Western Cape fighter’s stats
Western Cape fighter’s win percentage

Provincial Analysis
Gauteng certainly seems to be producing the most top fighters. This was not altogether a surprise due to the fact that Gauteng has the biggest fighter base to work from. Kwazulu-Natal, which has had a very active MMA community for some years now is the province producing the second most top fighters. Western Cape claims the third spot, but interestingly all the fighters representing the province were heavyweights. The Eastern Cape is the last province represented, incidentally only by lightweight fighters. No other South African provinces were represented in the top 30 fighters.

For those wondering why the numbers don’t add up, light heavyweight fighter Paul van Vuuren was not assigned a province as he left South Africa in 2010.

MMA growth by province
  1. Gauteng
  2. Kwazulu-Natal
  3. Western Cape
  4. Eastern Cape


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