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Sunday, November 25, 2012

No Holds Barred: Jeff Monson, Penny Thomas, Matt Betzold at FILA World Championship 

On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman speaks with Jeff Monson, Penny Thomas, and Matt Betzold. All three won world titles at the 2012 FILA senior World Grappling, Pankration, and Amateur MMA Championship, held November 15-18 at the Hala Widowiskowo Sportowa in Skala, Poland, near Krakow.

Just two days after submitting Alexander Emelianenko in MMA on an M-1 card in St. Petersburg, Russia, Jeff Monson represented the USA in the no-gi grappling competition at +100kg at the FILA worlds. He won all three of his matches by decision, taking his third FILA world title in grappling. This title, however, he said in this interview, recorded right after his match on November 17, was his "most difficult."

Penny Thomas of South Africa, who has won world titles in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, the ADCC Submission Fighting World Championship, and the FILA world championship in grappling, won double gold at this event, winning world titles in both gi and no-gi grappling in the women's 64kg division.

American Matt Betzold, who has an amputated left leg, won his first world title, winning at 62kg in amateur MMA. He also took second at this event in no-gi grappling, also at 62kg.

We spoke with each of them right after they won their historic world titles.

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