Sunday, 15 January 2012

Top 5 MMA Welterweights in South Africa

The Welterweight division is one of the most competitive in the country and almost certainly boasts the most fighters. This has further been enhanced by many of South Africa’s Middleweights dropping down to Welterweight in a bid to test their skills against smaller opponents. Here is my take on the 5 fighters at the top of the South African Welterweight division:  

1.       Dallas Jakobi (12–4)
Dallas Jakobi is currently on a 4 fight tear across two weight divisions in the EFC. The former Middleweight recently found a home at Welterweight, where he bested Adam Speechly in a 5 round decision to become the EFC Africa Welterweight champion. Jakobi has fought some of the best in the business and has notable wins over Wade Henderson (twice) and Paul Cunningham. Having come from a different weight division, Jakobi has a whole host of interesting matchups available to him as he defends his Welterweight title.

2.       Adam “The Prodigy” Speechly (12-3)
Grappling wunderkind Adam Speechly is widely regarded as one of the top ground specialists in South Africa. The prodigy is used to big fights and has submitted many of the country’s finest including Dallas Jakobi, Nolan Swanepoel (twice) and Dino Bagattin. He has also faced two of my top ranked fighters in Dallas Jakobi (WW) and Jeremy Smith (MW). Speechly, a staple on this list, was recently defeated by Dallas Jakobi in a 5 round title fight at EFC Africa 10. A rubber match may yet be in the future for these two fighters.

3.       Martin “The Punisher” van Staden (18-5)
Martin van Staden is one of the most experienced fighters in the Welterweight division, having fought both national and international professionals. The punisher has notable wins over Nolan Swanepoel, Ronald Dlamini and Leon Mynhardt. He also has notable fights against Brian Ebersole (currently fighting in the UFC), Ali Maclean and Jeremy Smith. Undefeated in 3 fights in the EFC, van Staden will square off against Dino Bagattin in what seems to be a number 1 contender matchup at EFC Africa 12.

4.       Dino “The Lion” Bagattin (8-1)
Dino Bagattin is one of the finest strikers in the EFC, with a decorated Muay Thai background. Bagattin’s sole loss was at the hands of Adam Speechly in a back and forth tussle at EFC Africa 2, but the Lion bounced back and is once more in the hunt for the EFC Africa Welterweight title. Currently on a 3 fight winning streak, having beaten Manny da Silva, Remo Ralph and Juan Lubbe within the first round, Bagattin will face Martin van Staden at EFC Africa 12.

5.       Neil “The Original” Diesel (18-2)
Neil Diesel is one of the old guard of MMA. Having fought and beaten the best in South Africa for many years, Diesel entered the EFC hexagon against Victor Anyaogu with a huge reputation. Diesel however, was unable to showcase his MMA pedigree as he suffered a knee injury early on, which would eventually force him to submit and receive only his second loss. The Original remains a huge threat to the Welterweight division when he returns to the Hexagon.

To view all division rankings visit my MMA division rankings page


I think your ranking at number 5 is incorrect.Highly doubt you will see Neil fight at efc

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