Ewerton Teixeira: Tactical K-1 Fighter With the Game Plan to Beat Overeem

The K-1 World Grand Prix 2009 is the year's biggest kickboxing event, and as we get ready for the December 5 show, we have K-1 announcer Michael Schiavello offering his commentary on each of the fighters. His thoughts on Ewerton Teixera are below.

By Michael Schiavello

Nickname: Kyokushin Commando
Nationality: Brazil
Age: 27
Height: 6' 2"
Weight: 240
Stance: Orthodox
Gym: Ichigeki Academy, Tokyo
K-1 Record: 8-1 2 knockouts
Notable Wins: Jerome LeBanner DEC, Keijiro Maeda DEC, Musashi DEC
Strength: Leg kicks, durability, powerful right cross, solid counters
Weakness: Inexperienced, plodding fight style, lacks invention
HDNet K-1 Ranking: 7
Probability of quarterfinal Win vs. Alistair Overeem: 40%

The 9th World Open Karate Champion and former K-1 Japan GP Champion, Teixeira represents the new generation of Kyokushin Karateka powering into K-1's ranks.

The amicable Brazilian is a succulent technician with power in his mawashi geri (roundkicks) and underrated hands, particularly his superb right cross that he uses effectively as both an offensive strike and a counter.

Indeed under the tutelage of former Commonwealth Games boxer and Muhammad Ali Cup winner Faii Falamoe, Teixeira's boxing has become one of the Brazilian's best weapons. Under the watchful eye of former South Pacific kickboxing champion Jayson "Supa" Vemoa, Teixeira has learnt how to fight smart and take little risk – though this has also been the weak point of his game.

Teixeira takes his second tilt at the GP crown on December 5 having failed to make it out of the quarter final stage last year against Errol Zimmerman in a close battle the Brazilian was winning until knocked down in the last round. He qualifies for his second GP by way of a horribly boring decision over Singh Jaideep in Korea – a fight best forgotten.

While Teixeira continues to improve, the problem remains his inability to turn fights around with any sort of ingenuity, inventiveness or bursts of aggression. You could set a metronome to his plodding style, which makes him somewhat predictable. Though he has reaped some success thus far in his short K-1 career (including winning the 2008 K-1 Japan GP title and a decision win over Jerome LeBanner), he is still unable to shake it up and change it up the required amount to take the Grand Prix crown.

His quarter final match against the rampaging Overeem on December 5 would seem a disaster for those unfamiliar with Teixeira's style and mentality. However I see Teixeira as being anything but a pushover for "Ubereem's" ferocious style. Indeed an overly aggressive opponent like Overeem plays right into Teixeira's slower more methodical game plan. Such is Teixeira's awesome durability (he is very thick-bodied and doesn't wear a lot of clean shots) that he should be able to effectively ride out Overeem's aggressive onslaughts and counter the Dutch monster with straight line punches and tenderize the legs.

Jayson Vemoa assures me that he has found a chink in Overeem's armour and if there's one thing you can always rely on from Team Ichigeki it's that they will deliver their charge prepared and with a thorough game plan you could write a thesis on.

Teixeira was virtually untouchable in the world of Full Contact Karate. He was a five-time All American Champion in 2001 (defeated Kentaro Tanaka), 2002 (defeated Lechi Kurbanov), 2003 (defeated Sergey Osipov), 2004 (defeated Eduardo Tanaka) and 2007 (defeated Andrews Nakahara). He won the 9th World Open Karate Tournament in 2007 (defeated Jan Soukup in the final). He will hope to become Kyokushin's first ever K-1 World Grand Prix Champion, something Glaube Feitosa and Francisco Filho did not achieve before him (both were runners up).

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