The countdown is on for Marlan “Pretty Boy” Hall to defend his Battlefield Fight League (BFL) featherweight amateur title on March 16.
Originally from Oliver, Hall has gained notoriety in the South Okanagan since earning the mixed martial arts title in September 2018. Gaining multiple local sponsors and accruing a sizeable fan base, he says he’s ready to take on challenger Casey O’Leary at the Molson Canadian theatre at the Hardrock Casino in Coquitlam.
“I don’t want to say he’s below me, but I’m more known, I’m the champ, I’m the guy who has the title,” said Hall. “I think he’s been trying to speak himself up to my level, but when that cage door shuts it’s a whole different thing.”
|Marlan “Pretty Boy” Hall struggles to stay on top during a 7-minute wrestling match at Pacific Top Team gym in Penticton on March 1. Hall employs different styles of training to ensure he’s ready for his mixed martial arts fight on March 16. Jordyn Thomson – Western News/td>|
Currently employed as a mixed martial arts trainer at Pacific Top Team in Penticton, Hall said he’s been able to mix training into his work schedule. He said he tends not to focus on the opponent when training because you never know what could end up happening before the fight.
“I’m quite the perfectionist so I always feel like I could be doing more, but right now I’m at peak form. I’ve never felt better for a fight camp.”
“I typically try to just better myself. It’s a balance of trying to game plan to fight somebody and working on your weaknesses,” said Hall. “For me personally, I like to work on my weaknesses because a lot of guys fall out and that won’t be your opponent. Injuries happen or sicknesses occur and somebody else might step in.”
Hall is thankful for the support he’s been receiving from the community but said when it comes to fight night, it’s all about clearing his mind and doing what he’s been trained to do.
“I try to not think of it like I’m fighting, I just typically do my regular routine (the day of the fight). I shower, eat breakfast, hang out with friends,” said Hall. “We’ll talk about the fight a bit but I try not to focus too much on it. You don’t want that adrenaline dump or get too anxious beforehand or when it happens you just conq out.”
Hall said win or lose that he plans to take his career professional following the match up on March 16. If he bests O’Leary, his amateur record will be 10 wins – a record in BFL history – and a title defence.
“It would mean everything (to win). It’s just one of those things that I want to put a stamp on my amateur career.”
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