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English MMA Association launch includes Dan Hardy, Marc Goddard

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The founders of the English MMA Association, including former UFC fighters Rosi Sexton (front, second from right) and Dan Hardy (front, right)
English MMA Association

The English MMA Association is here.

Per a press release, the EMMAA announced its launch in Birmingham, England, and its intent to focus on the education, training, and development of the sport at a grassroots level.

Installed as president is veteran referee Marc Goddard. He is joined by former UFC fighters Dan Hardy and Rosi Sexton, as well as referee Leon Roberts and MMA judge Paul Sutherland. Rounding out the nine-person founding roster and handling the media, medical, and administrative side of things are journalist Nick Peet, Martin Shotbolt, Nigel von Sachsenburg, and Dr. Abad Ali.

“Personally, I am thrilled, excited and ambitious to share the future of mixed martial arts that we hold a collective responsibility to,” Goddard said in a statement. “The invitation and formation of the inaugural board in my eyes needs no introduction and we all share and hold the same passion for this wonderful sport. United we stand.”

The EMMAA will operate under the auspices of the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation, of which Goddard currently works as the director of regulatory affairs. It outlined several long and short term goals, which were listed in Friday’s release:

– To develop the amateur sport with the long-term goal of seeing MMA at the Olympic Games.

– To harness the benefits MMA has to offer wider society.

– To represent English MMA internationally with the development of a national team via domestic competition.

– The installation of a national rankings system.

– To promote a positive image of mixed martial arts.

The release also mentions plans to reach out to clubs, fighters, officials, doctors, and other participants for national registration, to address the unification of MMA-related rules, regulations, and safety procedures, and to promote a series of amateur tournaments culminating in a national championship event in 2020.