Katie Breingan, Jason Breingan with Vann, 16 months, MMA Battlers chief executive Chris Yates, event organiser Andrea Yates and tournament co-ordinator Nathan O'Connor. Photo Trish Bowman / Capricorn Coast Mirror
Katie Breingan, Jason Breingan with Vann, 16 months, MMA Battlers chief executive Chris Yates, event organiser Andrea Yates and tournament co-ordinator Nathan O'Connor. Photo Trish Bowman / Capricorn Coast Mirror Mike Knowling

Aussie Battlers competition cancelled after little interest

AFTER months of heavy advertising for the MMA Aussie Battlers competition at Yeppoon only two tickets were sold, organiser Andrea Yates said yesterday.

And, she said, only 60 fighters had nominated.

It was well down on the projected 300 they hoped for.

Entrants were paying $250 each to take part in the event, which was promoted as Australia's richest-ever mixed martial arts tournament.

Now there's a number of want-to-be fighters and local businesses who had provided services for the event, left out of pocket.

Ms Yates (pictured) said they tried really hard to bring a significant sporting event to the region, despite minimum support from within the MMA industry.

"We battled on, but the company is now insolvent," she said. "We're being very transparent with everyone."

She said any funds recouped from liquidators would be distributed between people who had paid money to them.

"What people need to realise is the money they gave us went into creating an extensive website, promotions, consulting, Facebook, and into local businesses," she said.

The company had previously said they hoped to provide $25,000 to the family of Rockhampton boy Vann Breingan, who suffers from severe eczema.

The event was set to be held at the Capricorn Resort on June 13-15.

Ms Yates also claimed the host venue had provided a "less than fair arrangement".

Capricorn Resort general manager Jonathan Dean said there was a dispute over commercial terms, which were the same for any commercial entity wanting to stage an event there.

"We put forward some commercial terms for use of the resort that weren't agreed to," he said.

Jonathan said the resort requested details like public liability insurance and crowd management details, as they did for every event, but MMA Battlers did not disclose this by the April deadline.

"That's when we asked for that information," Jonathan said. "They informed us they believed the contract we put forward and the agreement that we had verbally agreed to was untenable. That was the first we had heard of it."

As a gesture of goodwill the resort is offering no cancellation fees for people who may have booked accommodation at the resort for the event.