Results: Cage Warriors 61
James Brum (pictured) made the best of a bad situation on Friday.
Brum was supposed to fight for Cage Warriors’ bantamweight title last week. With that fight against Brett Johns off, Brum stayed busy against Marat Pekov, instead. He survived a rough patch in the first round, then rolled to a unanimous decision win to stay on track in the main event of Cage Warriors 61.
Cage Warriors 61 took place at King Hussein Youth City Boxing Arena in Amman, Jordan. The main card streamed live on MMAjunkie following prelims on Cage Warriors’ Facebook page.
The two fighters went toe-to-toe to start the bout, with each man landing a few good punches. But 45 seconds in, Pekov put Brum on his back. They traded elbows on the ground, with Brum trying to create angles to work his way back to his feet. But Pekov turned him away from the cage to push him back to the middle.
Midway through, Brum got to his feet. But Pekov slammed him back down, took his back and went after a rear-naked choke. Brum stripped his hand off, but still was in a bad spot with plenty of time left. After nearly two minutes defending, Brum was able to reverse position to land a few shots from up top and, most importantly, survive the round.
Brum got to the top on the ground a minute into the second, then took his time starting to go to work. Pekov worked as much offense as he could from his back. Pekov was issued a stern warning from referee Rich Mitchell for grabbing Brum’s shorts a second time, and for an upkick to a grounded Brum that nearly landed in full. On the restart, Brum looked to keep Pekov in trouble. With more than a minute left, Brum latched on to a guillotine choke, but he couldn’t hold it, and Pekov made it to the final frame.
Pekov kicked high early, but Brum blocked it and fired back. For most of the round, he was able to keep Pekov on his back, grinding him out. When the fight was over, Brum celebrated and tried to hug Pekov, presumably for a good fight. But Pekov shrugged him away – perhaps knowing the decision wasn’t going to go his way.
Brum (14-2), who trains in part at Team Alpha Male in Sacramento, took a trio of 29-28 scores to pick up his eighth straight win and improve to 7-0 under the Cage Warriors banner. Pekov (10-5), from Russia, lost his second straight after a decision setback against Ronnie Mann in his promotional debut in October.
It took five minutes for Jack Mason (26-12) to get going against Seydina Seck (15-10), but once he did, things went fairly smoothly. The two chased each other around the cage a bit, trying to get an advantage on the feet early in the first round. Each fighter was able to land a few punches, but neither was able to put the other in trouble as they continued to measure things through the first.
But in the second, it was Mason who was able to start to assert his will, controlling Seck on the ground. He had to defend a few Seck submission attempts, but it was never anything to put him in danger. In the third, Mason was the victim of an odd circumstance. With a guillotine choke on Seck, the referee called the bout – but then seeing Seck immediately protest, and realizing he wasn’t out, he restarted the fight. Mason wasn’t allowed to restart with the guillotine in place – the two went back to standing. The strange situation may have kept Mason from a finish, but it didn’t keep him from a mostly dominant win. He picked up a 30-27 score and a pair of 29-28s.
Quickly into the fight, James Hurrell (6-4) probably had many places he’d rather be than walking off a low blow from Mohamed Ali (9-5). But after doing so, maybe it was that low blow that was as good as it was going to get for him. Soon after the restart, Ali was all over Burrell with legal strikes. Hurrell was forced to turtle up to try to survive a flurry of Ali strikes on the ground – he rained down with hammerfists, knees to the body, took Hurrell’s back and traded off from rights to lefts and back again.
He got a little anxious and tried to back mount, and Hurrell escaped to his feet. But that didn’t last long before Ali continued to dish out the punishment. Hurrell had almost nothing to offer in return. With Hurrell’s mouthpiece in the center of the canvas, Ali kept pounding until the referee finally stopped things at the 4:02 mark of the first.
Jake Bostwick walked out in a mask like the one worn by the Bane villain in “The Dark Knight Rises,” though it looked early like it might be Vincent del Guerra‘s ground work that would be a bane to him on Friday. But Bostwick (13-8) did enough to pick up a unanimous decision win, getting a trio of 29-28 scores after surviving a dicey moment in the first. Del Guerra (20-10) got a takedown early and went to work on top. But Bostwick turned things around and even got to full mount late in the round.
Del Guerra stayed composed, though, and when Bostwick tried to move to side control, Del Guerra got to his feet. It wasn’t for long, though, as Bostwick landed a solid throw. Del Guerra did good work from his back, nearly getting an armbar, then a triangle. But Bostwick finished the frame on top.
Bostwick spent much of the second in del Guerra’s control. He got out late and landed some good ground-and-pound from side control, but couldn’t finish things off. The third round was much more firefighting than the first two rounds, including some wild exchanges. With three minutes left, del Guerra fell to his back hoping, perhaps, to stall out from Bostwick’s punching. But though the third was a little sloppier with both fighters tiring, it was Bostwick who got his hand raised in his promotional debut.
In a back-and-forth battle, Julien Boussuge (11-3) outworked and outpointed Damien Brown (10-6) over three rounds to take a unanimous decision that probably was closer than the scores would otherwise indicate. Boussuge took a pair of 30-27s and a 29-28 from Brown to get the win. Boussuge landed a three-punch combo quickly into the fight, but it was a takedown on a missed Brown left that started to win him points with the judges.
The second was filled with scrambles, and Boussuge had his best chances to finish from his back looking for an omoplata, then an armbar. But Brown defended and tried to land ground-and-pound the way he did in the first round. In the third, Boussuge was able to get a D’Arce choke in place and appeared to have Brown in trouble. But Brown recovered to his guard to see it go to the judges, who apparently liked Boussuge’s control on the ground more than Brown’s.
In the main card’s opening bout, Paul Marin (7-3) appeared to have his game plan against Spencer Hewitt (10-7), and he played it to perfection. Marin took Hewitt down quickly into the first round, and Hewitt wanted him to come down into his guard. But Marin backed away to stay on the feet. As far as Marin was concerned, it was rinse and repeat.
Moments later, he tossed Hewitt again, with the cage saving him from a bigger takedown. A minute later, though, Hewitt couldn’t be helped and was thrown in a big way. Marin’s fourth takedown, though, had him staying down on the ground, and he landed some big punches and knees to the body. Covering up, Hewitt finally tapped rather than stay in and take more punishment.
Complete Cage Warriors 61 results:
James Brum vs. Marat Pekov via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Jack Mason def. Seydina Seck via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Mohamed Ali def. James Hurrell via TKO (strikes) – Round 1, 4:02
Jake Bostwick def. Vincent del Guerra via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Julien Boussuge def. Damien Brown via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Paul Marin def. Spencer Hewitt via submission (strikes) – Round 1, 3:38
Jarrah Al-Silawi def. James Burrows via KO (strikes) – Round 1, 0:33
Arnold Allen def. Doni Miller via TKO (strikes) – Round 2, 0:34
Photo: Dolly Clew | Cage Warriors
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