Results: Cage Warriors 66
Cage Warriors has a new welterweight champion: Nicolas Dalby. And he did it in front of his home fans, and in highlight-reel fashion.
In a highly competitive main event at Cage Warriors 66 at the Ballerup Super Arena in Copenhagen, Denmark, Dalby didn’t seem to be able to get an advantage over Sergei Churilov – until the fourth round, thanks to a massive kick. He stopped Churilov with a KO, and got the vacant 170-pound belt strapped around his waist.
Dalby danced outside early and kicked from his karate stance. Then he tried to land a kick upstairs – obviously a sign of things to come. Churilov landed a good counter punch, but Dalby remained aggressive. The two swung wildly in the center of the cage with two minutes left in the first round, but neither took an advantage.
That was the theme of the fight. Each fighter got his fair share of points, but there were few times that either put together much to give himself a noticeable advantage over the other.
In the fourth round, Dalby tried to get some momentum – but a pair of slips on the canvas seemed to curtail that. But then, out of nowhere, he once again threw the right high kick, and this time it landed clean. As Churilov dropped his hand to try to block the kick, it got through.
Churilov staggered from side to side before falling to the canvas. Dalby was on him quickly, and a few follow-up punches on the ground might not have even been necessary. The official end came at the 2:19 mark of the fourth round, and one of Copenhagen’s home heroes became a champion.
“It’s f—ing awesome,” Dalby said after the fight. “I’ve been doing it in practice and training. My kicks are one of my trademarks. I was lucky in the end here. It seems like his game plan changes from fight to fight, so we were expecting everything.”
Dalby (12-0) stayed unbeaten with the win, his debut for Cage Warriors. Churilov (15-2) had a five-fight winning streak snapped.
Against the much bigger Bruno “B.C.” Carvalho, Mohsen Bahari could’ve been in trouble on paper. But he put on a striking clinic early. When Carvalho threatened, Bahari circled out of danger. The two traded more wildly as the first round wound down.
Bahari continued doing good work in the standup game in the second, even as Carvalho tried to walk through the barrages. And Carvalho found a way to do some damage to Bahari’s face, as well. Carvalho got a big takedown in the third. But once back on the feet, neither fighter seemed to take a discernible edge, leaving it in the hands of the judges with uncertainty on the way.
John Maguire was hoping to make a statement, taking the fight for his injured brother on just a week’s notice. He needed to get back in the win column after a disappointing loss only three weeks ago at Cage Warriors 65. But Damir Hadzovic had other ideas.
Maguire came out quick with a combination, then shot for a single-leg takedown. But Hadzovic defended and wound up on top. Maguire nearly had an armbar, but Hadzovic elected to stand up out of danger and go back to the feet. That proved to be a brilliant decision.
After a low blow restart, Hadzovic landed a right hand, then a pair of knees crumpled Maguire. And with the veteran on the ground, Hadzovic landed three more big shots to get the TKO finish. Hadzovic (8-2) won for the fourth straight time. Maguire (19-8) lost for the second straight time and fifth time in six bouts.
Toni Tauru loves him some rear-naked chokes, and Martin Akhtar found out the hard way. Akhtar landed an overhand right straight away, but Tauru answered back before the two tied up along the fence. That appeared to be Tauru’s wheelhouse, and he took Akhtar’s back to look for a takedown. He finally got it, and though Akhtar quickly got back to his feet, Tauru soon had the fight back on the canvas and had Akhtar’s back with ease. He kept a body lock on, and worked for a rear-naked choke.
It wasn’t tight enough early. But he went back after it with a minute left, and the second time was the charm. He squeezed tight and got the tap with 36 seconds left in the first. Tauru (9-1-1) won for the ninth straight time, and sixth straight time by submission. Five of those six have come by rear-naked choke. Akhtar (3-2) lost for the first time since this same weekend a year ago.
With the Scandinavian crowd clearly behind him, Jack Hermansson came out fired up. But then he had to settle for a durable Enoc Solves Torres making it tough for him to finish – though he finally got him late. Hermansson would mostly dominate the first 10 minutes. In the third, though, Torres unloaded on Hermansson with a big left hand, then a knee. Hermansson was in big trouble, and he grabbed the fence to aid himself. But Torres stayed relentless and took Hermansson’s back and looked for a rear-naked choke with plenty of time to work.
After a brief scramble, Torres landed a 12-6 elbow to to the back of Hermansson’s head. Torres was warned by referee Rich Mitchell, but didn’t lose a point. And that was enough for Hermansson to recover, and he went on to really work for the finish in the final two minutes with ground-and-pound. And finally, with one last flurry, Torres verbally tapped to the barrage with just 24 seconds left in the fight. Hermansson (6-2) snapped a two-fight skid. Torres (13-7) had a two-fight streak ended.
In a battle of momentum shifts, Martin Svensson took a split decision from Robbie Olivier to open up Saturday’s event. Olivier was in control of the fight in the first round, trading ground-and-pound for choke attempts. But it was Svensson who was on fire in the second. He had a tight triangle choke applied, then opened Olivier up with elbows.
Olivier survived the round to see the third. There, the two traded mini rallies, but it was Svensson who convinced two of the three judges he had done enough. Svensson (13-5) snapped a two-fight skid. Olivier (20-10-1) had a five-fight unbeaten streak snapped.
Nicolas Dalby def. Sergei Churilov via TKO (kick, punches) – Round 4, 2:19 – for vacant welterweight title
Mohsen Bahari def. Bruno “B.C.” Carvalho via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Damir Hadzovic def. John Maguire via TKO (strikes) – Round 1, 3:58
Toni Tauru def. Martin Akhtar via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 4:14
Jack Hermansson def. Enoc Solves Torres via submission (strikes) – Round 3, 4:36
Martin Svensson def. Robbie Olivier via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Jussi Halonen def. Frodi Hansen via disqualification (illegal strike) – Round 1, 4:59
Hakon Foss def. Per Franklin via technical submission (triangle choke) – Round 1, 3:26
Lina Akhtar Lansberg def. Emma Delaney via TKO (strikes) – Round 3, 2:26
Rioo Ibrahim def. Alexander Jacobsen via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 1:49
Shamal Tashkilot def. Binh Son Le via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Matthias Lodahl def. Haci Firat Dogan via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 3:26
Photo: Dolly Clew | Cage Warriors
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