Thursday, 28 April 2011

Wentzel Nel vs Costa Ioannou - EFC 08 Lightweight Title fight

At EFC Africa 08, Wentzel Nel would attempt to defend his EFC Africa lightweight title against surging contender Costa Ioannou. Nel (3-1 EFC) had lost his last non-title fight against American Dave Mazany, while Ioannou carried an impressive 2-0 EFC record into the Hexagon.

Wentzel Nel vs Costa Ioannou - EFC 08 promo video

Wentzel Nel vs Costa Ioannou - EFC Africa 08 lightweight title fight

Costa Ioannou was quick to take the centre of the ring, and after a very brief exchange of punches, closed the distance and got the clinch. Wentzel Nel landed the bigger shots early in the form of punches and knees, but Ioannou worked the clinch well and landed some big elbows and knees of his own, before taking the fight to the ground. Nel managed to work his way back up to standing from a dangerous position, and the clinch once more ensued. After a brief exchange of close range shots, Ioannou managed to create some space and land a huge elbow followed by two huge knees which buckled the champion. Costa Ioannou was quick to take him to the ground and take side control. Ioannou used his position to land some shots before transitioning to full mount. Costa Ioannou then rained down punches on Wentzel Nel, forcing him to react and as he did, Ioannou sunk in a deep triangle choke. Nel was forced to tap 3 minutes into the first round, and Costa Ioannou was declared the new EFC Africa lightweight champion.

Costa Ioannou vs Wentzel Nel - EFC 08 full fight video

Adam Speechly vs Nolan Swanepoel EFC 08 Title fight

At EFC Africa 08, Adam Speechly and Nolan Swanepoel entered the EFC Hexagon with a mutual goal - to become the first EFC Africa welterweight champion. Both Speechly and Swanepoel earned their title shot with an impressive 3-1 EFC record. The two fighters had previously fought at EFC Africa 04, where Adam Speechly won via first round rear-naked choke submission.

Adam Speechly vs Nolan Swanepoel - EFC 08 promo video

Nolan Swanepoel vs Adam Speechly - EFC Africa 08 title fight

The first ever welterweight title fight started slowly, the first three minutes of which were fairly uneventful. Speechly seemed to be the more aggressive of the fighters, attempting some combinations which eventually ended in a clinch. The two fighters vied for position for in a clinch for what seemed an age, landing the occasional ineffective shot, before Speechly attempted a Guillotine choke, which Swanepoel avoided. Speechly would attempt a second Guillotine choke seconds later, as well as various other other submissions before the bell saved Swanepoel from a precarious position.

Round two was over before it began, as Adam Speechly quickly locked in a Guillotine choke on Nolan Swanepoel from standing, and took it to the ground to earn the tap and the EFC Africa welterweight title.

Adam Speechly vs Nolan Swanepoel EFC 08 fight video

Friday, 15 April 2011

Ruan Potts vs Obutobe Baygon Heavyweight Fight

After a convincing win, it seemed somewhat strange for a surging Ruan “Fangzz” Potts (11-0) to be pitted against a relative unknown in Obutobe Baygon (0-0). Fighting our of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Baygon has a background in Karate, Kyokushin, Judo and Amateur Boxing. Baygon, in his first professional MMA fight was going to be put to the ultimate test against Ruan Potts.

Potts vs Baygon - Tale of the tape

Ruan Potts
Obutobe Baygon
South African

Baygon came into the fight carrying a massive 7cm reach advantage and a 2cm height advantage. Potts is 5 years the junior of Baygon. Everything else is virtually the same. Baygon however, did not look in the best of shape, especially when compared to the muscle bound Potts.

The fight started off tentatively, with both fighters weary of each other’s striking power. The first strike of the match, thrown near the end of the first minute, was a rather awful failed leg kick come back kick combination from Potts, which was a low blow. Fangzz immediately apologised and Baygon shrugged it off to resume the tense chess match. 

The first real exchange of the match saw Ruan Potts leading with a leg kick and Baygon countering with a beautiful right hand. A rather meaningless flurry ensued, with Potts pushing forward and ending with an attempted side kick. Potts looked somewhat confused and continued to work the leg kick, which Baygon continued to counter with his right hand. The fight seemed to have no real rhythm. Potts eventually ducked under a punch and closed the distance and pushed Baygon against the fence, a position he used to great affect against Calven Robinson.

Potts landed a few foot stomps and then attempted a Judo throw, which he didn’t execute perfectly and ended up in bottom half guard with Obutobe on top. Strangely, Baygon seemed completely clueless on the ground and just hugged Potts for the better part of a minute, which Potts landed short shots to his head and body. Referee Wikus Swart warned Obutobe Baygon that the fight would be stood up should he not move, but seconds before this was executed, Ruan Potts managed to sweet the dormant fighter and take full mount. From the top Potts then unloaded a barrage or punches and elbows against his inactive foe, who attempted to cover his face to no avail. Referee Wikus Swart called an end to the bout at 3:56 seconds into the first round, declaring Ruan Potts the winner via TKO.

A rather boring fight, one feels that Ruan Potts gave Obutobe Baygon far too much credit and meticulously ground out a win against an opponent who wasn’t fighting for more than half of the bout. Still, Pott’s win streak in the heavyweight division continues and surely with this win he has earned himself a heavyweight title shot.

EFC Africa 08 - Ruan Potts vs Obutobe Baygon Full Fight Video