Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal: Geatan Sautron vs. Kirk Krouba R1 2:43. Krouba was a head taller, and tried to use straights from the outside and knees on the inside. Sautron was making the fight throwing wild overhands and hooks. Sautron appeared to mainly be burning energy and leaving himself exposed to counters, but Krouba really didn't adjust to anything Sautron was doing, and Sautron eventually got lucky dropping him with a left hook. Krouba didn't adjust to improve his defense against the hooks any, and Sautron soon caught him with a right hook on the inside then finished with a left. Technically, this wasn't very impressive, but at least they kept a good pace for heavyweights. Below average match.
Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal: Mohamed Achachbaun vs. Thomas Vanneste 3R. Achachbaun had the power to knock Vanneste off his feet with a single low kick, but he appeared to train by hitting the bar with Tank Abbott, and at 145kg he simply wasn't fit enough to attack with any consistency. Achachbaun didn't cut the ring off, so when Vanneste finally smartened up he made Achachbaun chase him, stopping to take free shots at his winded opponent. Vanneste lacked heavyweight power, but had pretty good technique, and really it didn't much matter as long as Mohamed was going to be so inconsistent about answering his shots. Achachbaun did pretty well in the first, but Vanneste just disected him after that. Below average match.
Cenk Cankurtaranoglu vs. Kevin Hesseling R1 0:20. Hesseling landed a step knee and tried a 2nd one, but Cenk timed it and KO'd him with a left cross.
Andrew Tate vs. David Radeff 3R. Tate wanted to control the center of the ring and score with jabs and middle kicks, but Radeff kept coming forward. Tate was just too quick and thus still controlled the spacing, moving and landing from the outside then bringing knees to the body that were gassing Radeff when the distance was closed. Radeff got desperate in the 3rd, landing a few wild shots, but Tate was just too technical for him to the point he never had to open up. Above average match.
1st 61kg Ladies Enfusion World Title Decision Match: Anke van Gestel vs. Ilona Wijmans 5R. Appeared to be a mismatch at the outset that might even end quickly, but these two ultimately brought out the best in each other and it got more intense and competitive with each round as they were forced to raise their level and dig deeper, throwing harder and more frequently. I'm certainly not expert on women's kickboxing, but in the end, I'm not sure if I've seen a better female match. Wijmans loaded up for the big punch early, but Anke, who kept her hands high but otherwise had no respect for her power, just kept coming forward. Van Gestel's pressure backed Wijmans, forcing her to punch off her back foot, which allowed van Gestel to continue to walk through her and beat her up with knees. Wijmans got more and more after the first and appeared to break van Gestel's nose with a left hook early in round 2, but although Wijmans was making inroads, generally the muay thai style of van Gestel was overwhelming the only boxing style of Wijmans. The workrate amazingly increased with each round despite Wijmans taking the fight on 6 days notice, and the bout continued to get more and more competitive, as Wijmans really began to connect with her punches. Although Wijmans hands were heavy, she still couldn't impede van Gestel's forward progress or stop the much taller fighter from kneeing her. Van Gestel may have been getting hit, but she did a really good job of countering with her punches and especially her knees. Wijmans was landing good hooks to the nose in round 4, and even gained enough confidence to actually throw a few kicks, but van Gestel hurt her with a knee to the body late in the round. van Gestel won a unanimous decision to become the first champion. Excellent match.
Heavyweight Tournament Final: Geatan Sautron vs. Thomas Vanneste. Sautron was an entirely different fighter here, shifting from a wild brawling throwing huge overhands against the giant to a kicking machine switching between beating the leg up with inside and outside leg kicks and beating the arm up with middle kicks. Vanneste tried to come forward and apply more pressure in the 2nd, but Sautron would stop him with the middle kick and just continued to dissect him. Sautron soon hurt him with a knee, but Vanneste weathered, perhaps partially because he got a rest to recover from a low blow.
Nico Barbera Rocamora vs. Ruben Almeida 3R. Barbera had the better timing, catching Almeida coming in then going on the offensive and backing Almeida with a combo. Almeida could never seem to find the range, and that was making him sloppier and thus more prone to Barbera's counters. The action was good if not frantic, but it was pretty much one-way traffic. Barbera dropped Almeida with a left hook in R2, and followed it up literally sprinting after him for a running combo until Almeida lost his balance in the midst of fleeing. Barbera probably could have finished here, but was so aggressive he was either being wild or smothering his own range. Above average match.
Moises Ruibal Martinez vs. Tadej Toplak R1. Ruibal was cut above the right eye. Toplak got more aggressive after the doctor checked it out, landing a high kick that wobbled Ruibal and following with a big hook and clinch knee before Ruibal fought back on the inside with a punch combo that dropped Toplak. Toplak barely beat the count, but his corner threw in the towel.
Iman Barlow vs. Maribel de Sousa Riera 3R. A really fast paced, hard fought, all action match, that was ultimately rather one-sided as Barlow is a body destroying juggernaut. De Sousa started aggressively, pushing the pace and giving it all she had, but Barlow wasn't even phased and took over with her brutal body work. Barlow just punished the midsection with kicks and knees in between some low kicks, and de Sousa had nothing to slow her down. The first round was fairly even, but the last 7+ minutes were pretty much of a beatdown even though Barlow wasn't able to land a huge blow to drop de Sousa. Barlow won a unanimous decision. Good match.
Abraham Roqueni Iglesias vs. Artur Kyshenko 3R. A high level fight pitting Kyshenko's boxing and ring control against Roqueni's movement and left attacks. Kyshenko was controlling the center of the ring, but throughout the 1st round Roqueni slid in with a combo, doing most of his damage beating up the leg with the finishing kick. Kyshenko wasn't phased though, and in R2 he began opening up and letting his hands fly to even the fight. Round 3 was the toughest to score, as Kyshenko was steady with his pressure and boxing, but Roqueni landed the best shots, a high kick at the outset and a middle kick, and continued to do nice work beating up the leg. Roqueni won a split decision. Good match.
Sahak Parparyan vs. Cesar Cordoba Aviles 3R. I don't know what Parparyan was thinking here. He just stood in front of the rangier Cordoba blocking, so Cordoba dominated a boxing match that was largely devoid of kicking, landing several solid jabs that Sahak rarely countered with a low kick and bloodying his nose. I kept waiting for Sahak to back up out of Cordoba's jabbing range and throw some low kicks or even close the distance and try to work on the inside as he was clearly losing at the range he chose to fight in. Finally, after dropping the 1st two rounds, Parparyan closed the distance, working some combos to the body then landing an inside knee and coming over the top with a right for the knockdown. This took much of the steam of Cordoba's punches, allowing Sahak to press forward with heavy attacks for the rest of the fight. Parparyan couldn't finish though, so it was ruled a draw. Above average match.
1st 70kg Enfusion World Title Decision Match: David Calvo Martinez vs. Mirko Vorkapic. Calvo came on late in round 1 with a right hook, left high kick, and step knee that badly split Vorkapic's left eyelid resulting in the immediate stoppage.
Amanda Kelly vs. Fatima Adib 3R. Kelly applied relentless pressure, and while Adib was able to move enough to be hard to hit despite her reach disadvantage in the 1st, her footwork quickly broke down. In round 2 & 3, Adib would consistently get caught standing against the ropes taking the teep and middle kicks then getting beat up in the clinch with the knees. Kelly was just on another level, and was able to maintain that level throughout. Kelly won every round en route to the unanimous decision. The fight was entertaining enough, but you never felt Adib had a prayer. Average match.
Andrew Tate vs. Marino Schouten 3R. Schouten had decent tactics, but wasn't willing to let his hands go. He walked Tate down to take away his reach advantage, but that's all he could do was come forward, as Tate was the one getting off all the 3 strike combos while Schouten stared at him. Schouten did land a nice high kick at the end of round 1. Tate began to make a little headway in round 2, as at least he was closing the distance and landing some body kicks and knees, but still Tate was the one getting off most of the time. Schouten was able to pull Tate into more of an inside brawl in the 3rd, which made for the closest round as Schouten matched some of Tate's combos with good knees. Tate won a unanimous decision. Above average match.
Mirkko Moisar vs. Jason Woodham R2. 2:09. Really an impressive show of heart from Moisar, as he did not seem like he'd even be able to compete based on the 1st round. Woodham appeared to just be too good, and certainly too big. He beat him Moisar up with clinch knees throughout and dropped him with a high kick at the same time Moisar was trying to kick low early in the 1st. You felt that Woodham might be able to finish in the 2nd, but Moisar not only didn't lose hope, he forced himself to open up, and put Woodham down with 2 body punches and a knee. Woodham got up, but Moisar went right back to the liver with a left hook that totally shut Woodham down. Good match.
1st 54kg Ladies Enfusion World Title Match: Iman Barlow vs. Alexis Rufus 5R. The effort, pace, heart, and cardio here were just amazing. Both women wanted to become the 1st champion so so badly, and wanted to win it with a knockout. Barlow was too strong for Rufus, particularly blistering her with kicks and then rocking her with clinch knees. Rufus was trying to win on technique early, but her normal style is actually winning with aggression, and in any case, neither were happening. By round 2, Barlow was just walking her down, trying her up, and bringing the knees. Rufus kept trying to attack, but although most of the time Barlow had the answer, as the fight progressed Rufus was able to do some damage with her right hand coming in before Barlow clinched her. Many fighters would have backed down, but if the best Rufus was going to be able to do was maybe get a good shot in before she took a couple, she was going to do that, and do it repeatedly. Barlow won the 1st 3 rounds, but Rufus was making inroads with the right hand in the 4th, and you just had to admire her for how hard she was still trying to win, and for the crazy pace she was still able to push. You couldn't see her winning a decision at this point even though she may have taken the 4th, but she was damned well going to make Barlow earn the title if it came down to that. Rufus did everything in her power, but in the end, as in the beginning, Barlow was simply a higher class of fighter. Barlow won a unanimous decision to become the 1st champion. Very good match.
Michael Wakeling vs. Pajonsuk SuperPro Samui. A memorable display of will by Wakeling to come back on sheer pressure after a 10-8 1st round for Pajonsuk. Both wanted to rely on their muay thai kicking game, but it never actually happened. Early on, it was Wakeling's left hook that was the difference. However, 2 minutes in, Pajonsuk suddenly landed a big left hook to drop Wakeling, and Wakeling pretty much spent the rest of the round recovering. Pajonsuk never rocked him again, but was landing solid shots, and it certainly looked really good for him going forward. Wakeling was back with a vengeance to start the 2nd though, and just pushed a massive pace for the rest of the fight, denying Pajonsuk any room. Pajonsuk moved laterally and showed good head movement, but was essentially against the ropes for the last 6 minutes, so he wasn't able to kick, and was just constantly under fire from punch after punch. Wakeling efforted his way into forcing an extra round, which Pajonsuk wasn't too happy about given the way the last two went, but also this was his first fight in 2 1/2 years, so he was understandably more than a little worse for wear. Heart & determination ruled the day in the 4th, though in different ways. The youthful will of Wakeling allowed him to keep pushing forward as he did in the 2nd & 3rd, really giving an excellent display of cardio. Pajonsuk was overmatched in this round, and took too much punishment, but he wouldn't go down or give it up even though the writing was on the wall. He saw it through to the end, mustering up the occasional big shot that usually missed and generally making Wakeling earn the victory he managed to steal from the former champion. Wakeling won a unanimous decision. Very good match.
Zavec Ales vs. Stevan Zivkovic 3R. There was quite an obvious disparity in the skill level, with Zivkovic just throwing one unanswered 2 punch + low kick combo after another. Zivkovic was really digging into the lower legs on the kicks, and then came back high with the right hand for a knockdown at the end of the 1st. Ales was less overwhelmed in the 2nd, showing some solid boxing and putting Zivkovic down with a left straight counter to a left middle kick, but generally Zivkovic was still in control loading up and hoping to finish. Ales could really take a punch, and a front kick to the face, but this was never competitive. Zivkovic won a unanimous decision. Above average match.
Samo Petje vs. RungSiam SuperPro Samui R1 1:40. Intense southpaw vs. orthodox fight with both throwing power, and really digging into their shots from the outset. Petje was backing RungSiam but not really letting his shots go as he seemed to be looking to counter, so it was RungSiam was firing to take his space back. Petje had some good right hand counters. RungSiam wobbled Petje with a left cross counter to a left middle kick and got aggressive, following with an overhand left, but Petje countered that with an overhand left that just sent RungSiam crumbling and took the life right out of him.
Tadej Toplak vs. Jaroslaw Zawodni 3R. Toplak was throwing wildly, but he's powerful, and he quickly had Zawodni in trouble with a flurry of punches. Toplak did well when he came forward with punch combos, aided by Zawodni holding his hands too low and not moving or reacting quickly enough on defense. Zawodni also was much better when he was coming forward. Toplak generally kept him on the defensive, but by going all out in the 1st two rounds trying to finish Zawodni, he didn't have much left for the 3rd and battered Zawodni was actually the far fresher fighter. Zawodni was on the offensive in the 3rd, taking the round with several good punches. He still lost the majority decision, but his refusal to give up made the fight. Good match.
1st 57kg Ladies Enfusion World Title Match: Ilona Wijmans vs. Nevenka Mikulic 5R. Wijmans' boxing was too powerful, knocking Mikulic's head back with every left hook. Her right was impressive as well. Still, it was kind of a tame fight for the first 2 1/2 rounds then suddenly Wijmans staggered Mikulic with a left high kick out of nowhere. Mikulic had the movement, but Wijmans was walking her down and was the one landing whenever Mikulic was in range. I had Wijmans winning every round, as she was the one who was connecting, but somehow she only won a majority decision. Average match.
Jasmin Becirevic vs. Maxim Osiptsow. A good matchup of differing styles with both showing what they could do. Becirevic wanted a fast paced fight with a bunch of heavy exchanges, while Osiptsow wanted a more measured pace where he picked his shots. Becirevic dictated the first, coming out swinging and keeping the pressure on throughout. Although Osiptsow was answering, for me the first round clearly belonged to Becirevic for his aggression and power. Osiptsow turned the fight early in the 2nd, even if accidentally, with a front kick that got Becirevic in the eye, and this round was more toward his slower pace where he could be accurate without being overly active or feeling rushed by his half blind opponent. Becirevic landed two big right hands at the end of the 2nd to get back into the fight then dropped Osiptsow with another huge right early in the 3rd. Becirevic bulled forward, pushing and punching, and quickly got a standing 8 count from a left hook. I thought Maxim was going to be recovered after stealing a break spitting his mouthpiece, but Becirevic just kept coming, and staggered Maxim with an overhand right. I was half expecting Joop Ubeda to stop it when Becirevic landed another huge overhand right, but Maxim managed to survive the round. The fight was likely even going into the 3rd, but Becirevic really stepped up with a huge round to nearly get the KO and easily secure the decision. Good match.
Mirko Vorkapic vs. Longhern SuperPro Samui. Longhern had an awkward style with his hands low and his back against the rope, circling against the ropes and keeping Vorkapic away with push kicks. It took a little while, but once Vorkapic figured Longhern out he got inside and beat him up with his boxing, almost knocking him down, but Longhern was essentially saved by his back landing in the middle ropes. Longhern was trying to use his range in the 1st, but after that while he did a better job of keeping himself off the ropes and in a position where he could defend better, he was basically just standing in front of Vorkapic throwing power punches. Longhern did have a good 2nd round, but was tired in the 3rd, and Vorkapic really took over. Longhern seemed sure he'd won, but Vorkapic was the aggressor most of the fight, and certainly finished a lot stronger. It was a competitive quality match to be certain, but Vorkapic definitely won at least two rounds. Good match.
Enfusion -75kg Title Match: Ali Gunyar vs. Gregor Smole
Buray Bozaryilmaz vs. Keng SuperProSamui
Bas Vorstenbosch vs. David Radeff
Angelo Wilkes vs. Amansio Paraschiv
Tayfun Ozcan vs. Pajonsuk SuperProsamui
Adam Hart vs. Remigijius Reblys
Christi Brereton vs. Denise Kielholtz
Charlie Peters vs. Meletis Kakabouvas
Marlon Hunt vs. Andrew Tate
Michael Wakeling vs. Yassine Metiri
Enfusion 60kg Title Match: Rittijack Kaewsamrit vs. Amine Kacem
Pete Irving vs. Imanol Rodriguez
Leslie Risa vs. Daniel Terry
Lasher Kurun vs. Rustam Guseinov
Iman Barlow vs. Filipa Correia
Adam Shrek Hart vs. Kay Bult
63KG Enfusion World Title Match: Greg Wooton vs. Pietje Doorje
Juan Bol vs. Regian Eersel
Fred Sikking vs. Razvan Benche
Darryl Sichtman vs. Duoli Chen
Hafid el Boustati vs. Robbie Hageman
57kg Ladies Enfusion World Title Match: Ilona Wijmans vs. Nathalie Visschers R4 2:35
James Gridley vs. Fahid Marroun
Andrew Tate vs. Laszlo Szabo
Adam Shrek Hart vs. Chris Cooper
Iman Barlow vs. Marina Zueva
Razvan Ghita vs. Gaetan Sautron
75kg Enfusion World Title Match: Michael Wakeling vs. Ali Gunyar
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