Every Wednesday, The MMA Corner’s Duncan Price will bring a view of the MMA world from across the pond in England, covering well-known British fighters within the UFC and Strikeforce, and also looking at significant events put on by British promotions within the borders of the United Kingdom.

UCMMA 26: The Real Deal – Recap

Ultimate Challenge MMA kicked off a new era on Saturday night, as the organisation held their 26th numbered event at The Troxy in London. Expectations were high and UCMMA once again delivered action and quality in equal measure.

The headline bout featured current UK-1 welterweight champion Luke Sines against Paul Daley’s replacement, Peter Irving. Although Irving stepped up on relatively late notice, many supporters had him as the favourite going in, based on his MMA experience.

The contest was fought under UK-1 rules, which appeared to favour the kickboxer Sines, but as the tussle continued, it was Irving who pushed the pace. In particular, Irving was able to close the distance and utilise his improved clinch game.

Leaving the result in the hands of the judges is never a good idea, especially when neither man appeared to have dominated the fight. Fortunately for Irving, the judges sided with him, awarding him the split decision victory and crowning him the new champion.

In the co-main event, Aurelijus Kerpe took on Linton Vassell for the vacant UCMMA light heavyweight title. Kerpe was a late replacement for Przemyslaw Misiek Mysial, and the change of opponent may have presented a challenge to most competitors, but not Linton Vassell.

Vassell stalked his rival from the outset, taking the action to the mat at the earliest opportunity. Initially, Kerpe managed to avoid any serious damage, however Vassell was able to transition into full mount and land a barrage of heavy blows to Kerpe’s head. In his attempts to escape, Kerpe left an arm open and Vassell easily locked in the fight-ending armbar.

In other notable action, top bantamweight prospect Corey Tait met underdog Spencer Hewitt. All did not go to plan for the favourite though, as Hewitt connected with a devastating straight right that landed flush on the chin of Tait, sending him crashing to the canvas. Hewitt followed up with a few more bombs on the ground, but the referee had seen enough and the bout was waved off after just 10 seconds.

UCMMA 26: The Real Deal – Results

  • Peter Irving def. Luke Sines via Split Decision – Round 3 (5:00)
    Irving becomes the new UK-1 welterweight champion
  • Linton Vassell def. Aurelius Kerpe via Submission – Round 1 (3:16)
    Vassell becomes the new UCMMA light-heavyweight champion
  • Spencer Hewitt def. Corey Tait via KO – Round 1 (0:10)
  • Stav Economou def. Tomasz Czerwinski via Submission – Round 1 (3:06)
  • Ashleigh Grimshaw def. Rae Edgar via Submission – Round 1 (3:45)
  • Iain Martell def. Mohamad Ali via Submission – Round 1 (4:25)
  • Luke Barnatt def. Ben Callum via Unanimous Decision – Round 3 (5:00)
  • Chi Lewis Parry def. Ollie Beard via TKO – Round 2 (1:29)
  • Walter Gahadza def. Andy Cona via Submission – Round 1 (3:27)
  • Jason Radcliffe def. Miguel Bernard via Submission – Round 1 (0:45)
  • Dean Bray def. Sam Gilbert via Unanimous Decision – Round 3 (5:00)
  • Michael Page def. Ben Dishman via TKO – Round 1 (1:05)
  • Sean Carter def. Dan Welsh via Submission – Round 3 (2:42)
  • Florian Calin def. Stephen Stanley via Split Decision – Round 3 (5:00)
Hathaway Scheduled to Meet Krauss, Again

After a year away from the Octagon, John Hathaway will finally get back into action at UFC on Fox 3.

John Hathaway (Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)

UFC officials announced the fight today, but did not add any further information.

This will be the second attempt at holding this particular match-up, which was originally scheduled to take place at UFC 138. Unfortunately, both men suffered injuries and the bout was eventually scratched from the card.

Hathaway rebounded from a disappointing loss to Mike Pyle at UFC 120 with a split-decision victory over Kris McCray at UFC Fight Night 24. Prior to the defeat against Pyle, Hathaway had posted a 14-0 mark that included UFC victories over the likes of Rick Story, Paul Taylor and Diego Sanchez.

Krauss holds a 10-0 record in his own right, mainly from competing within his home country of Germany. At his UFC debut, he defeated fellow newcomer Mark Scanlon via decision at UFC 122, earning himself a Fight of the Night bonus in the process.

UFC on FOX 3 takes place May 5 at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, N.J. The main card will air on FOX in the U.S. and ESPN in the U.K.

Cage Warriors: Fight Night 3

Cage Warriors venture overseas once again on Saturday night, as the promotion holds its third “Fight Night” in Beirut, Lebanon.

The main event features an intriguing clash between UFC veteran Kyle Watson and Finnish all-rounder Juha-Pekka Vainikainen.

Several other talented competitors will also appear on the card, including TUF finalist Tommy Speer, notable Swede Mats Nilsson and top UK featherweight Graham Turner.

Cage Warriors – Fight Night 3 Fight Card:

  • Kyle Watson vs. Juha-Pekka Vainikainen
  • Tommy Speer vs. Mats Nilsson
  • John Donnelly vs. Domingos Mestre
  • Graham Turner vs. Matteus Lahdesmaki
  • Ben Alloway vs. Mauro Chimento
  • Victor Cheng vs. Matt Gabel
  • Gareth Joseph vs. Faycal Hucin

We will, of course, bring you the news and results from this exciting event in next week’s Brits & Pieces.

The Ultimate Fighter – Australia vs. U.K.

We previously teased you with the possibility of an Australia vs. U.K. edition of The Ultimate Fighter, but it appears those rumours may now come to fruition.

Could Dan Hardy be one of the coaches for a UK vs. Australia TUF? (Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)

At a recent press conference to promote the UFC in Oz, managing director of international development Marshall Zelaznik described a deal for the reality series as “close.” Bad news for British fans though, as the final, according to Zelaznik, would take place Down Under.

“We are close to getting ‘TUF: Australia vs. U.K.’ done, and if we can close that, we will look to hold the finale in Brisbane.”

Zelaznik did not elaborate further on either the format of the show or who the potential coaches would be. If the series is put into production, then it will likely air via tape delay due to the time differences around the world.

Should the finale take place in Brisbane, it would mark the UFC’s first Australian card outside of Sydney. The Brisbane Events Centre has been earmarked as a possible venue.

Talk will now centre on who the coaches may be, as there are no clear candidates. Michael Bisping has coached on TUF twice and it would be a step down at this stage for the middleweight contender. Ross Pearson, Terry Etim and Brad Pickett all have recent losses and may not have the star-power the UFC would be seeking.

Dan Hardy would be an option, as he is a fan favourite, but there aren’t any well-known Aussie welterweights for him to square-off against.

It may transpire that two North American fighters will relocate temporarily whilst the season is filmed, although this would potentially cheapen the intense rivalry between the two countries.

Top Photo: Peter Irving (R) and Luke Sines stare-down at the weigh-ins for UCMMA 26 (WWBRD.com)

This piece was authored by Duncan Price. Follow him on Twitter, @DuncMMA

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