September 2, 2015
September 2, 2015
Darren Barker throwing a right hand

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FOLLOWING on from the basic stance and footwork, here are three fundamental combinations.

One-two-three
One of the first combinations young fighters are taught, but still incredibly effective
1. The jab is a range-finder really. So, if they are stepping back, you step forward with the shot; I would usually throw the jab on the front foot.
2. I would twist my hips forward and anti-clockwise, and twist the back foot in the same way, as I throw the right hand.
3. Bring the right hand back to your chin and, at the same time, twist your hips and front knee clockwise as you arc the left arm towards your opponent.

Mexican style
Swapping the standard left hook for one to the mid-section varies the attack
1. Again, I would start the combination going forward. I can lean in more with this because I want to be nearer the target for the body shot.
2. I follow through with the right hand as with the first combination, but my body is a bit lower down.
3. I transfer the weight from my right hand, back through my hips and into my left hook, whipping it towards the ribcage.

The Zarate
Named after the Mexican legend Carlos Zarate who mastered it
1. I step into range and fire out the jab as previously described, although I don’t bring the lead hand all the way back.
2. Then I step in again – especially if they have retreated or the jab has knocked them back – with a long left hook. This is designed to clip them around the guard, so the angle is not as pronounced.
3. The long left kept them guessing and maybe caused their guard to widen slightly, so I twist into the right hand, as previously described, aiming for between their gloves.

Common mistake
Fighters often drop one of their hands, especially with the one-two-left hook. Cello Renda and Paul Samuels both did it to each other with their famous double knockdown. The right hand must go straight back to your chin. When I sparred Takaloo, every time I threw my left hook, he threw his, on the off-chance I would drop my right hand.