Cage Warriors statement
(London, United Kingdom | Thursday, July 31, 2014) - Cage Warriors Fighting Championship (CWFC) can this evening confirm that it has reluctantly taken the decision to move next month's CWFC 71 event to Amman, Jordan.
Originally scheduled to take place in Stockholm on Saturday, August 23, CWFC 71 was due to be another historic Cage Warriors event, with Sweden set to become the thirteenth country to play host to Europe's leading mixed martial arts promotion.
However, issues outside of CWFC's control have forced officials to move the event to Jordan, with CWFC 71 now booked to go ahead at Amman's King Hussein Boxing Arena on Friday, August 22.
CWFC 71 will be Cage Warriors Fighting Championship's tenth event of 2014. Bouts and further details will be announced in due course.
The decision to move CWFC 71 from Sweden to Jordan has come as a result of the nonsensical refusal of the Swedish Mixed Martial Arts Federation (SMMAF) to approve several bouts to be contested under full unified rules.
Of the initial five bouts that were submitted for approval, only one - a featherweight bout between Martin Svensson (13-5) and Dave Hill (12-3) - received permission to be contested under full unified rules.
The remaining four did not receive the necessary approval, with the SMMAF claiming in a statement: "The committee has found that several matches applied for by Cage Warriors have not made the required level."
In addition to referring to "unequal matching", the SMMAF stated its belief that the fighters involved do not possess enough experience to compete under full unified rules.
Cage Warriors Fighting Championship has been at the core of the global MMA community since its inception in 2002 but, in particular, the significant growth of the promotion since 2010 has been built on a foundation laid by the ability of its fighters and the quality of its matching, courtesy of our exceptional matchmaker Ian Dean.
As a promotion, CWFC is shocked and bemused by the SMMAF's apparent reasoning for preventing these bouts from taking place, given that Cage Warriors Fighting Championship has developed into one of the world's leading promotions based largely on these very qualities.
This has led CWFC officials to question the motives of the SMMAF in this instance, as up until this issue arose, both parties had co-operated effortlessly to lay the platform for CWFC to stage an event in Sweden.
From the outset, CWFC officials assured the SMMAF that their protocol would be followed throughout each step in the process, and even agreed to allow the CWFC 71 undercard bouts to be contested under the SMMAF's 'Swedish rules' i.e. with elbows and up-kicks prohibited.
"Moving this event out of Sweden is a decision we really wanted to avoid, but because of the actions of the SMMAF, we have unfortunately been left with no choice in the matter," said Cage Warriors CEO Graham Boylan.
"To ask our elite fighters, who are among the best in Europe and the world as a whole, to compete under a diluted set of rules to what they have been doing throughout their professional careers is an abhorrent insult to these outstanding athletes and their abilities.
"Jack Hermansson is our middleweight champion and Jack Mason is probably the most experienced fighter in the UK, but their respective bouts were not approved. It's absolutely absurd.
"Suggesting that such fighters are not capable of competing under full unified rules is ludicrous beyond belief and I would never even consider asking them to compete under anything other than full unified rules.
"The SMMAF have left us in an impossible, and very sad, situation here, and unfortunately our only option is to take our athletes elsewhere for this event."
The four bouts which did not receive SMMAF approval for full unified rules are: Jack Hermansson (8-2) versus Cheick Kone (11-3) - CWFC agreed to this title bout being contested over three five-minute rounds; Pannie Kianzad (5-0) versus Alexandra Buch (8-3); Jack Mason (28-13) versus Jonatan Westin (6-2); Liam James (8-6) versus Frantz Slioa (4-0). Applications for further bouts were in the process of being submitted until today's decision to move the event from Sweden.
Furthermore, the SMMAF's pro-committee has claimed publicly that there was no conflict of interest involved in their decisions, despite one committee member being the current manager and coach of Martin Svensson, one of the fighters involved in the only CWFC 71 bout that was approved for full unified rules.
Nevertheless, while the SMMAF has ultimately prevented Cage Warriors from staging this event in Sweden, the promotion is extremely appreciative of the widespread support it has received from the Swedish MMA community, particularly from former SMMAF and IMMAF president August Wallen.
"I'm very sad about this situation," August Wallen said. "Many have worked hard to get Cage Warriors to Sweden and, as someone who helped to build MMA here, I'm concerned as I believe this could be a major setback for the development of MMA in the whole region.
"As a coach, I have looked forward to taking part in this great Cage Warriors event and I feel bad for all the fighters who have worked hard but will now be denied the chance to fight here in Sweden in front of a global audience."
Those sentiments have been echoed by Tue Trnka, CWFC's Head of Operations in Scandinavia, who has worked tirelessly to put the framework in place for the first ever Cage Warriors event in Sweden.
He said: “I'm shocked and appalled by the ridiculous actions of the SMMAF’s pro-committee. This is hurting so many local fighters, as well as the entire Nordic MMA scene, which has now taken a massive hit.
“I strongly disagree with the SMMAF’s negative decisions and I find their lack of dialogue both disrespectful and arrogant, considering the vast impact their decisions will have on so many people.
“We've done everything that was asked of us, and yet it seemingly comes down to just two people on the pro-committee, who for some reason have decided to vote against these fights.
“If you look at some of the UFC’s undercard fights in Sweden, all of which have been approved for full unified rules by the SMMAF, and compare them to the fights we applied for, I find it hard not to wonder if there is some bias involved.
“This was a massive opportunity for Swedish and Nordic MMA, but bureaucracy has won out here and Swedish MMA has suffered an enormous blow.”
In spite of these developments, Cage Warriors Fighting Championship will not abandon its plans to expand in Scandinavia, with the promotion more determined than ever to stage an inaugural event in Sweden.
“Our first event in Denmark was a huge success last March and I have no doubt that the same would have been the case in Sweden on August 23,” said Graham Boylan.
“That will now have to wait slightly longer than we had initially hoped for, but I can assure our Swedish fans that it’ll be worth the wait when CWFC finally gets there.
“The actions of the SMMAF have set a worrying precedent for MMA in Sweden, but this has not deterred us at all. Between fighters and fans, Sweden has played a major role in the growth of Cage Warriors and I have no doubt that it will continue to do so.”
really sucks. You are going to have these growing pains in places with commissions without a lot of experience. Just really really sucks that it had to happen to Cage Warriors in this instance.
Sherdog.com - The number one MMA site on the web today!
So very sad. Sweden are behind the times on this one. It is counter productive to hold MMA bouts under their stupid terms.
I hope that sooner, rather than later, the current fighting generation of Swedish manage to replace these biased ignorant people.
Solid supporter of: Tomasz Adamek. Maurício Rua. Daniel Ghiţă
Meh, fuck Sweden then. I for one shall no longer consider a holiday there in protest.
Sig awaiting witty quote from someone.
Last edited by Jimmy Boogaloo; 02-08-2014 at 12:15 PM.
Reason: basic common sense
'Go read a fucking book, you piece of shit.'
To be fair I can understand them objecting to "Jack Mason (28-13) versus Jonatan Westin (6-2)".
I don't know Westin but on fight records alone thats a disgraceful mismatch in anyone's book or "unequal matching" as they called it.
All the other complaints they made seem terrible but this appears to have some reasoning behind it.
" The Dictator "
Stockholm Sweden CWFC 71
The SMMAF advise a professional fighter must have 10 or more fights to compete
under Unified Rules, however, if a fighter has less then 10 fights you must submit
reasoning why the fighters should be allowed to compete under Unified Rules.
All fights Rejected by the SMMAF to compete under Unified Rules as
mismatched or not experienced enough.
Rejected by the SMMAF - CWFC - Pannie Kianzad (5-0) vs. Alexandra Buch (8-3)
Approved by the SMMAF - UFC - Matt Mitrione (5-2) vs. Phil De Fries (9-2)
Rejected by the SMMAF - CWFC - Jack Mason (28-13) vs. Jonatan Westin (6-2)
Approved by the SMMAF - UFC - Gegard Mousasi (33-3-2) vs. Ilir Latifi (6-2)
Approved by the SMMAF - UFC - Cyrille Diabate (17-8-1) vs. Tom DeBlass (7-0)
Approved by the SMMAF - UFC - Adlan Amagov (11-3-1) vs. Chris Spang (5-1)
Approved by the SMMAF - UFC - Ross Pearson (14-6) vs. Ryan Couture (6-1)
Rejected by the SMMAF - CWFC - Liam James (8-6) vs. Frantz Slioa (4-0)
Approved by the SMMAF - UFC - Tor Troeng (15-4-1) vs. Adam Cella (4-0)
Approved by the SMMAF - UFC - Simeon Thoresen (16-2-1) vs. Besam Yousef (6-0)
Rejected by the SMMAF - CWFC - Jack Hermansson (8-2) vs. Cheick Kone (11-3)
Approved by the SMMAF - UFC - Yoislandy Izquierdo (6-0) vs. Reza Madadi (11-2)
Approved by the SMMAF - UFC - Papy Aedi (8-2) vs. Besam Yousef (6-1)
ALL FIGHTS APPROVED BY SMMAF to compete under Unified Rules
UFC on FUEL TV 2: Silva vs. Gustafsson
14th April 2012
James Head (7-2) vs. Papy Abedi (8-1)
UFC on FUEL TV 9: Mousasi vs. Latifi
6th April 2013
Ryan LaFlare (7-0) vs. Ben Alloway (13-3)
Conor McGregor (12-2) vs. Marcus Brimage (6-1)
Last edited by Irish; 03-08-2014 at 05:48 PM.
Actions speak louder then words....#No23
The SMMAF dissolved its pro-committee at an emergency board meeting today.
They are shitting themselves because they are now in danger of losing their government granted sanctioning rights.
Sweden was the surprise golden goose for the UFC, Cage Warriors were not part of the plan to share the pie.
Could that have anything to do with it?
Ill leave you with this little bit of history.
"After the long battle to get sanctioned SEG was on the brink of bankruptcy when they were approached by Station Casinos executives Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta, and boxing promoter Dana White in 2001, with an offer to purchase the UFC. A month later, in January 2001, the Fertittas bought the UFC for $2 million and created Zuffa, LLC as the parent entity controlling the UFC. With ties to the Nevada State Athletic Commission (Lorenzo Fertitta was a former member of the NSAC), Zuffa secured sanctioning in Nevada in 2001. Shortly thereafter, at UFC 33, the UFC returned to pay-per-view cable television."
Now Lorrenzo was on the NSAC board whilst they were refusing to grant sanctioning/licencing which was ultimatly the death of SEG.
Then shortly afterwards bought it and abracadabra it got sanctioned the very same year.
Now did Lorrenzo have anything to do with SEG not getting sanctioned? who knows but it certainly looks IFFY.
The point being is that IFFY seams to be happening again and UFC interests are benefiting through design or not once again.
I know for a fact that they let matches pass through easy if they want to as I matched Artem Lobov and Ion Pascu for the following fights on events in Sweden for Swedish matchmakers:
Artem Lobov (7-7-0-1) vs Martin Svensson (12-4) - Trophy MMA 3 on 28/12/13
Victor Cheng (9-2) vs Ion Pascu (4-2) - The Zone 11 on 10/11/12
All records were before they fought.
Should these have been passed? as on paper and records were different
If you didn't see it with your own eyes, or hear it with your own ears, don't invent it with your small mind and share it with your big mouth!