So, we kicked off the semifinals this week. And what better way to do it than with me versus Eddie Gordon.

The episode began with some of the guys doing some drinking in the house and getting up to the usual sort of stuff that happens when guys drink alcohol. At this point in the competition, we had been in the house for over five weeks. Everyone was sick of being there and just wanted to see their families. I was still in the competition and being still locked away in that house was so difficult, so I can‘t imagine how hard it was for the guys who were out of the competition and still in there. So I can think Hector Urbina, Chris Fields and Tim Williams were more than deserving of having a few drinks.

The drunken carrying on by the guys didn’t bother me in the slightest. I was in bed and I was only once disturbed when Hector jumped into bed with me. I knew he liked me, but I didn’t know he liked me that much! I’d say Tim was happy with the editing of the show, because we only saw him butt-naked for about 15 seconds. In reality, though, he was crashing around that house in his birthday suit for about three hours.

My fight with Eddie started out exactly like I had planned. I came straight for him and pushed the pace of the fight. Like I thought it would be, it was too much for Eddie. I took him down several times, connected shots on the feet, hit him with a capoeira kick, and I fully sunk in a rear-naked choke in the last few seconds. And this was all in the first round!

The second round began much like the first. I pushed the fight and took control of the Octagon. I was the aggressor with strikes and takedown attempts. And then came the point which turned the fight. The momentum was completely in my favor, Eddie hadn’t really done anything really significant…I threw a spinning backfist and Eddie locked a bodylock on me from behind, and he took me down and landed in my guard. No significant strikes were really thrown while he was on top, but that whole incident allowed Eddie back into the fight and even though I got back to my feet soon after, it probably gave him the second round in the judges’ eyes.

The third round was very close. We both landed some shots, but again I felt I pushed the fight more. I felt I landed more punches, more kicks and attempted more takedowns. In the end a split decision was the outcome. Two judges gave the fight to Eddie and one judge gave the fight to me. It all came down to the opinion of one person, and it was a shattering way to be denied what I had worked so hard for and really believed I was going to do.

A lot of people thought I deserved the decision, including UFC President Dana White. However, it was a close fight, and I wouldn’t argue about the decision. Eddie got the nod and that is that. I didn’t sleep properly for a couple of months afterwards. Every night I would lie in my bed and stare up at the ceiling and think, “Why the hell did I throw that damn spinning back fist?” It was six months ago now and I’m over it. I’m a firm believer in things happening for a reason. I might be out of the TUF competition, but this isn’t the end for me. Thank you to everyone for the support so far this season, I’m sorry I didn’t make it all the way. But I promise you this: this is just the beginning for me…and you will see fulfill my dreams!

About The Author

Cathal “The Punisher” Pendred is a 26-year-old martial artist hailing from Dublin, Ireland. He was born in Boston while his father was studying law overseas. Pendred moved to Ireland at age five and took part in judo and taekwondo, before finding rugby. At the age of 19, Pendred turned his attention to MMA. He holds wins over UFC veterans Che Mills, David Bielkheden and Nicholas Musoke and was the Cage Warriors welterweight champion prior to joining the cast of The Ultimate Fighter. Pendred trains alongside current UFC fighter Conor McGregor and fellow TUF 19 competitor Chris Fields at SBG Ireland.

  • Paul Lynch

    Good luck on the Dublin Fight Card Cathal!