Neil Hall, a pioneer of mixed martial arts in the United Kingdom and a veteran referee of 40 UFC fights has passed away at 55 from COVID-19 complications.
His wife, Kath, reported via Facebook that Hall had been ill for three weeks since contracting the virus during a follow-up medical appointment for a previous back procedure.
Hall began in martial arts studying judo and shotokan karate. He would go on to train in Muay Thai, kickboxing, jiu-jitsu and sambo, competing internationally in the latter sport. In 2000 he opened the Fighting Chance gym, one of the first MMA gyms in the UK. Though he was 0-3 as a professional MMA fighter, he made a name for himself as one of the most experienced referees in Britain eventually opening a consulting service, MMA Officials UK, to provide referees for local shows and to help raise the sport's officiating standards.