Tara LaRosa,
Tara LaRosa,

Showdown at Breaking Point

sports January 06, 2018 22:30

By   THE SUNDAY NATION

Martial Arts veteran takes on Internet troll to defend women's honour.



Trolls are frustrating aren’t they, keyboard warriors that lash out without fear of retaliation. Like an itch you can’t scratch.

Take Kris Zylinski, for example. In many ways an average guy, 34 years old, 6-feet tall (1.83m) and 160 pounds (72.5 kg), a native New Yorker now living in Florida … but he happens to believe women are weaklings and no match for someone like him.

So when he spotted a man promoting martial arts classes for boys and girls so they could grow up able to protect themselves he couldn’t resist.

“This guy trains kids. A babysitter. Doesn’t train men to fight. Doesn’t make champions. Just takes money from kids and lies to them.” 

And that was just the start of it.The comment drew an angry response, which served only to unleash Zylinski’s deep-seated contempt for women’s physical abilities.

“99% of women are too weak … to do enough damage to stop 99% of men. They just don’t have the size or strength,” he ranted. 

“It’s dangerous to teach any woman to strike or fight a man.” Zylinski copped a flurry of unfriendly jabs on and laid down the gauntlet.

 “If you want to set up a mma [mixed martial arts] fight between me and a girl I’m down. 99% of women will lose to 99% of men. Me vs a pro female fighter? Still 80/20 me.“Go ahead and set it up. I’ll knock some delusional female out, win $100 go home happy and leave you wondering how some woman with Brazilian jiu-jitsu skills got knocked out by a full-fledged man.”

Well, hell hath no fury like a woman scorned and in no time his tirade had reached all over the US. In particular, it piqued the interest of Mcdojolife, an online group promoting women 

in the martial arts, and they weren’t taking his comment lying down. 

“We are willing to pay out $1,000 to any pro female 160 pound fighter willing to come and spar with this man. We will also provide plane ticket and hotel,” they announced on Facebook. 

“We are intrigued to try and set this match up. He has little to no experience.”

Word reached some of America’s leading female MMA fighters – and before long they were queueing up to stand up for their gender, take him on and shut him up. A legally-sanctioned fight was not possible so they called it a “sparring match” and set it up for 7am today (Thailand time) at the Breaking Point martial arts centre in Orlando, Florida.

Anna McCauley Dempster, an amateur fighter from Oregon with a 6-0 record, stepped up to the plate. Sadly, though, she soon suffered an eye injury and had to pull out.

In stepped Sarah “Primal” Patterson, a pro fighter with a 5-3 record. Then came news she had suffered a bad eye injury in another fight and had also withdrawn.

Finally, meet Tara LaRosa, a veteran and pioneer of MMA in the US who has been competing since 2002 and has a 22-5 pro record.

She announced to her Twitter followers: “I’m fat, I’m happy and out of shape … so I’ve accepted a last-minute fight with a 5’10” 160lb dude. I’m just a hired gun. Two other chicks pulled out before they found me.”

Social media was abuzz and the reaction was not altogether pleasant. ‘I hope you break every bone in his body,” typified the response.

Zylinski told The Nation: “I’m powerful, super-fit, I have what I humbly call amazing reflexes and I work out every day. I don’t see any way that she’s going to hurt me. I really have 

nothing to worry about.

“When I win, it’ll prove I was right that a woman has no business taking on a man. The only way she should defend herself is with a firearm. It’s just biology. It’s just reality.”

LaRosa told The Nation from her home in Detroit: “I’ve been dealing with these types of people for 20 years. I usually just ignore it but then I thought I was being soft so I told the promoter I’d step in if necessary and that’s what happened.

“I don’t know if I’m ready. I’m feeling a lot of pressure. A lot of people are saying I’m representing all female martial artists. I think that’s b*******”.

“Anyone can land a lucky punch or a well-placed punch, so his chances are very good. I haven’t been training regularly and I’m carrying a lot of extra weight right now. I usually fight 

at 125 pounds but I’m now up to about 165.

“I haven’t had a fight in almost three years because I have a great record and it’s hard to find someone that’ll take me on.

“To be honest I’m very nervous. I don’t want to fail in front of everybody. One of my best friends, another fighter told me ‘you’d better win, you’re doing this for all of us’ and I thought 

Oh sh**.”

The contest will be three five-minute rounds or until someone submits. Elbowing and kneeing your opponent are allowed; headbutts, biting and hair pulling are not.

It will be streamed live at www.facebook.com/McDojoLife and a video recording will be posted for those that are not able to catch it live.