Long-time UFC and Kickboxing veteran Semmy Schilt retires

Semmy Schilt (right) retired earlier today - Photo via Glory WS

One of the greatest kickboxers of all time has called it quits

"The Hightower" has called it a career.

Liverkick.com is reporting that kickboxing legend and former mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter Semmy Schilt has retired from combat sports due to a heart condition.

Schilt, who was slated to turn 40 in October, had been hoping to defend his Glory World Series Heavyweight Title against Gokhan Saki at some point this year, but Father Time has gotten in the way.

The nearly seven foot tall Dutchman was a four-time K-1 World Grand Prix champion, with tournament victories in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009 and is widely considered the greatest heavyweight kickboxer of all time.

Even near the end of his career, Schilt managed to win a single night 16-man tournament this past New Year's Eve in Japan, taking home the 2012 Glory Heavyweight Grand Slam crown and winning the inaugural title. Afterwards, he announced he was done competing in the single night tournament format, perhaps a sign of things to come.

Before his kickboxing prowess, Schilt also made a name for himself in MMA, earning his stripes in Pancrase, competing twice in the UFC and also facing the likes of Fedor Emelianenko, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Josh Barnett (twice) under the Pride banner.

Schilt's dastardly long and lanky frame made him a nightmare match-up in kickboxing as he nearly perfected the ability to utilize his reach, jabbing and kicking his opponents from distance.

He went out on a high note, knocking out elite heavyweight kickboxer Daniel Ghita via first round head kick in his fourth fight of the night, moving his overall kickboxing record to 43-6-1.

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