vs fighters with reach

BJJ Coffee Drinker

Amateur Fighter
Sep 2, 2002
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i'm gonna fight this week and my opponent changed last minute. the new guy i am fighting is about 5'10 as compared to my original opponent who was 5'6. this fight is american style kickboxing rules because he didn't want leg kicks. so all kick are above the waist. also, he is the returning champion from 2004 and had like 1 or 2 fights this past year so i havent seen much of him. So far, i think he is a counter fighter and may be a southpaw. i have never fought someone with such a reach advantage over me under kickboxing rules, i am like 5'6. any tips on what tactics i should stick with?
work your way inside to get leverage, and its too bad he didnt want leg kicks, that'd help alot...
The last guy I fought was about 4 inches taller then me and the best advice I got was from Duke Roufus who was training me at the time and that is keep going forward. Dont try and stay at a distance and counter because he obviously has the advantage, get inside his long reach and work hard before he ties you up since theres no knees in American kickboxing. My opponent was also a southpaw and I found a slightly loopy overhand cross to be a the perfect weapon. I also had good success with the front kick (dropped him with one to the face) it can work well as a tool to get your opponent off balance so you can rush in. Hope that helps and kick his ass =]
I believe the term is "hang on his belt." Get in close and work him from there. If he has reach, he'll obviously want to use that to his advantage, and if he's a savvy enough fighter to exploit this he'll likely spend a lot of time trying to create distance so he can keep you at a distance while wearing you out. Work his ribs with punches when you're inside, keep him winded so that when he has you at a distance he doesn't kill you.

Just remember that close != safe. If he's well-rounded, he'll have strategies for fighting in close since that's what any shorter fighter is likely to do.