Cage Warriors 48 Main Card Review
A tube ride from the York Hall at Bethnal Green to the HMV forum at Kentish town where Cage Warriors 48 is held only takes 33 minutes. But the journey Cage Warriors has undergone in the last 10 years has been a momentous one and deserves to be celebrated. A promotion that has gone through highs and lows and its fair share of drama over the years, but Cage Warriors will mostly be remembered by the action inside the cage than the drama outside it.
Jeff Monson and Dan Hardy both former Cage Warriors champions went on to compete for UFC titles in their respected weight divisions. Another former champion Michael Bisping became the light heavy weight winner of season 3 of The Ultimate Fighter, he also coached two more seasons. Former CWFC Middle weight champion Gerard Mousasi captured the Strikeforce light heavy weight title and won the Dream light-heavy weight grant prix. Not forgetting the likes of Paul Daley, Martin Kampmann, Dennis Siver, Ross Pearson, Paul Kelly, Antonio Silva, Jorge Rivera, Andre Winner, Tom Blackledge and Pascal Krauss who have all gone on to make names for themselves on the big stage. Where did they all start? Cage Warriors.
My last paragraph is proof that if you are taking your MMA career seriously in the UK, Cage Warriors is the only place to be and a championship title around your waist is a one way ticket to stardom.
Happy tenth birthday to Cage Warriors Fighting Championships and what better way to celebrate than by throwing a party. Now, no party of this magnitude is complete without an extravagant firework display, therefore Cage Warriors match maker Ian Dean has saved the best till last. Two of the most explosive fighters on the Cage Warriors roster: Welsh power puncher John Philips headlines against clinical Irish striker Chris "The Killing" Fields. Both men were scheduled to fight back in April in the semi-finals of the CW middle weight tournament but Fields had to withdraw through an unfortunate injury. Philips went on to face Pavel Kusch instead and was on the receiving end of 25 second heel hook which momentarily derailed his chances at middle weight gold. Philips bounced back with a second round submission win over Tomas Penz and is riding on the momentum coming into this fight. Fields was last seen on Cage Warriors with a devastating head kick KO win over Jack Mason in the first round of the tournament.
There is a twist in the tale; Victor Cheng has had to pull out of the tournament final. Cage Warriors CEO Graham Boylan has increased the stakes of this main event by giving the winner an opportunity to face Pavel Kusch for the coveted CWFC middleweight championship.
For Philips this means a chance to rewrite the wrongs of his 25 second defeat to Kusch and for Fields an opportunity to pick up from where he left of after sustaining that injury.
The fight opens with "The White Mike Tyson" Swinging for the fences; Fields with fear in his eyes starts to run away in hope of his life. On the backfoot Fields secures a take down; he kept busy from the top position for the main portion of the round picking his shots. Philips got back to his feet and began goading his opponent to stand and bang. Fields replied with a humiliating teep to the face, they both shared a laugh and touched gloves, Touché. The second round began with Philips as per usual head hunting for the knock out. Fields used his range to keep his opponent at bay with leg kicks. They clinched up again as Fields looked for the take down. Unbeknown to the Irishman, Philips was setting up a guillotine choke. Formidable striker John Philips scores the second submission win on the bounce at 2:40 of the second round. He can now look forward to a chance of redemption as he advances on to the Cage Warriors tournament final.
The Ultimate Fighter season 12 graduate Aaron Wilkinson makes his promotional debut against Leigh Cahoon who also makes his debut for Cage Warriors. Cohoon comes into this fight a heavy underdog against Wilkinson who has fought at the top level in the UFC and BAMMA. After a brief exchange on the feet Wilkinson opted for the take down. Cahoon sprawled but Wilkinson never gave up the attempt as he hoisted him up onto his shoulders. He walked over to his corner with his opponent on his back for what was the biggest anti climax of the night. Everyone in attendance at the HMV forum braced themselves for what might have been the biggest slam of the night. But Wilkinson laid his opponent down gently to receive further instruction from his corner. The instructions came thick and fast which lead to Aaron Wilkinson sinking in the rear naked choke at 2:07 of the first.
The MMA Clinics Brett Sizeland steps up a level in competition to take on whiley veteran Denniston Sutherland. Sizeland who holds a record of 6-1 has finished all his fights by TKO or Submission. His opponent Sutherland is coming off the back of two knock out defeats and needed a win to stand any hopes of getting into title contention at the twilight of his career. A huge take down from Sizeland opened the round; from there he looked to pic his shots from side control. Sutherland's experience became apparent as he hung in there looking for his opportunity to counter. That opportunity came as he gained top position pressing Sizeland up against the cage and repeatedly threw strikes to his head. Sizeland made no attempt to improve his position forcing referee Neil Hall to call an intervention at 4:12.
Since losing to tonight's headliner Chris Fields, Jack Mason has won three on the bounce finishing two of his opponents by first round guillotine. He then went on to defeat Tommy Quinn by split decision on Cage Warriors 47 back in June. Mason has found a new lease of life since dropping from middle weight to his new home at welter. His opponent is one of the top prospects hailing from the MMA hot bed of Liverpool, Next Generations Danny Roberts. Roberts will also be moving down to welter weight after a brief stint at middle. Racking up a record of 6-1, his only loss came from a crippling heel hook executed by Pavel Doroftei back in December last year. Danny Roberts is injury free and back to top form. The first round opened with a take down from Mason, from there the fight never left the same quarter of the cage it began in. Mason outwrestled Roberts to score higher on the judge's score cards at the death of the first. Mason looked to do the same in the second but Roberts' jujitsu game came alive as he fought off his back. He chucked his legs up catching the arm of his opponent. The strength of Mason began to show as he fought off the arm bar for a lengthy time. They arm wrestled until Roberts put everything he had into securing that arm bar which eventually came at 2:44.
The Hebrew Hammer Ido Pariente will be remembered for his stint on the 8th season of the ultimate fighter. Unsuccessful in his attempt he eventually got eliminated from the competition by the season winner, Efrain Escudero. He's also seen action against the likes of Jake Shields on K1 Dynamite so comes into this fight un-phased by the big occasion. Dale Hardiman comes into this fight with an impressive 8-3 record seeing off likes of Antanas Jazbutis and Scott Jansen. Regardless of Hardimans fledgling success this is a huge step up in competition. Pariente began the first round strongly, toying with Hardiman. Half way through the round he sat back for an achilles but was unsuccessful. The Hebrew Hammer came out of the blocks for the second round full of confidence, he hit Hardiman with a large hook, the crowd gasped, he hit him again and an even bigger gasp sang through the HMV forum. They both got sucked into a heavy exchang but it was Pariente who's back hit the deck. A couple of follow up shots from Hardiman lead to the referee Marc Goddard stepping in as Parientte lay on the canvas lifeless. Dale Hardiman was awarded the knock out victory at 43 seconds of the second round.
Most fighters who decide to drop a weight class do it for various reasons. Some struggle to find success at their current weight and drop to attempt to re vamp their career. These are not the motives of Kris "Evil" Edwards who has had major success at 135lbs submitting the likes of James Brum, Greg Knapp, Spencer Hewitt and Chris Gary. Edwards made his promotional debut on Cage Warriors fight night 5 back in April defeating Janne Elonen-kulmala by unanimous decision. This however will be his fly-weight debut. Here to welcome him is Brian Hyslop. Hyslop has no problem initiating a war of words letting Edwards know exactly how he feels about him in the pre fight build up. Coming into this fight Hyslop has built up a record of 5-1 with a decision win over Declan Williams in his last outing on Vision 3.
The war of words came to a conclusion tonight after a thrilling first round where Hyslop scored the take down and managed to keep top position for the best part of the round. Edwards stayed busy off his back attempting an array of submissions including a tight arm bar which Hyslop escaped. That arm bar attempt was a sign of things to come as during 1:44 of the second round, Edwards threw up an arm bar which was impossible to escape. The tap came and an enthralled Edwards celebrated by scruffing the hair of his fallen opponent. A fight with Neil Seery beckons as Kris "Evil" Edwards makes an impact on the fly weight division.
Review by Rick Wright
Pictures Courtesy of Huw Fairclough, Short & Round Photography.
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Published by Boogeyman - Sat, 21 Jul 2012 23:58