August 29th 2016

Fighter Profile
Name – Mark Casserly
Nickname – The Self Professed Prettiest Man In Dublin
Weight – 76kg-84kg (167 – 185 pounds)
Record – 39 wins 9 losses 1 draw
Team – Champion Muay Thai

Where are you from ?
Dublin , Ireland

How long have you been training ?
20 years altogether.

How did you get in to Muay Thai ?
When Enroute to qualify for the Olympics in 2004 in olympic Taekwondo I was beaten by Cuba, Olympic champion, in Paris.This ended my Olympic quest ,,,,and so I turned to Muay Thai to mostly vent the frustration and anger I had at the time,,I had no drive to compete for titles then.I just to wanted fight.

Tell us about your nickname how you got it ?
I’ve never had just one, fight names were always given in jest. Previously ( not anymore)A coach or team-mate would forward on my fight details to promoters and they would makeup names. I would hear them for the first time just before I entered the ring. Some of the non consenting names were “too sharp” , “Irish hammer” , but my favourite name was when I was fighting in Portsmouth and I hear the announcer call me “ the self-professed prettiest man in Dublin” ,my corner around laughing while I was calling them every name under the sun.

What was the defining moment for you when you knew you wanted to become a fighter ?
Since I was born.

Were your family and friends supportive when you decided to enter the world of Muay Thai?
100% supportive but my mother still won’t watch a fight.

What is your current record ?
39 wins 9 loses 1 draw.

What is your favorite strike or combination ?
Anything that knocks my opponent out.

Who is your biggest inspiration ?
I find inspiration mostly from average people I know that do extraordinary things ,whether it’s through their profession or charity work or overcoming an illness. These people don’t always get the recognition but their passionate and that inspires me as a person and as a fighter.

What team do you train with ?
My team  “Champion Muay Thai”.

Do you like to stand with your opponent or take the fight to the ground ?
I like to confuse my opponent with skill and grit

What does being a fighter mean to you ?
A fighters biggest weakness is everything good and bad outside of the ring,,,for me being a fighter means you approach all of your tasks , goals , achievements and passions like you would in the gym. Fighters have to be more than the sum of all of their pains and trials in life( as Hollywood would show).you have virtues like empathy, listen more ,communicate meaningfully ,be self-aware and mindful.

What weight do you fight at ?
At 1 stage I held national and international belts at 76kg,78kg79kg,82kg,84kg simultaneously

what do you think separates you from other fighters In your division ?
My approach to training , my passionate to workout even outside of camps and my ability to define and separate a good win and a good performance .

If you could have one dream fight who would it be against ?
At the moment I would love to fight my favourite fighter Nicky Holtzken.

Who has been your toughest fight to date ?
I’ve had a few but I would have to say my most Recent fight were I tried out fighting full A class rules against John Wayne Parr in Australia with MMA gloves, he stopped me in Rd 3,,,but what an experience and I wouldn’t change it if I could.

What is your mindset going in to a fight ?
It’s a process, I do feel nervous before every fight , I imagine losing and how will feel ,, then that gets me annoyed and focused . Then I would repeat back mantra in my head and say over and over again.could be something simple as “ hit and move then stand and bang”.

Who are you fighting next ?
Still negotiating.

What promotion are you fighting for ?
All and any.

What do you want to be remembered for at the end of your career ?
Being a technical and talented fighter who fights with a lot of heart in the ring and a gentlemen outside of it.

What is your favorite quote or motto ?
Frangus non flectus , Latin term loosely translated , I may bend but I will not break.

What has been your biggest accomplishment in the sport so far ?
Winning my World ISKA belt against Marcus Davis.

Who has been most influential to you in your career ?
My family , friends and coaches.

How would you describe your fighting style ?
Adaptable and exciting.

What drives or motivates you ?
Every goal that scares me to death , then doing it.

What is something people might not know about you ?
I’ve been training in Ballroom dancing the last 3 years ,,but don’t tell anyone😂

When you are not in the gym training what do you like to do in your free time ?
I’m a big movie fan and I love meeting up with friends and having a laugh telling stories and socializing.

What advice can you give to young fighters and those who want to become fighters
Find a good club and coach that you feel can guide you outside of the ring aswell as inside

What do you think you would be doing if you hadn’t become a fighter ?
I’d say a job in middle to upper management by day and playing or competing at a reasonable level in another sport by night.

What gets you hyped up for a fight do you have any pre fight rituals that get you ready to go to battle ?
I stay calm right up until 30 minutes before my fight . Then a button switches in my head and I become overly focused ,,,on my breathing , my mantra ,my padwork,, this is not a good time to come into my room and wish me well.

Where do you see the sport of Muay Thai in 5 years ?
Stronger governance from national governing bodies centred around fighter safety.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years ?
With 1 or 2 more belts then coaching full-time.

What do you think can change moving forward to make Muay Thai better as a sport ?
More transparent scoring and accountability , more commercial TV exposure , stringent safety regulations.

Who is your favorite fighter ?
Buakaw, and Nicky Holtzken.