It’s time to step into the world of British mixed martial arts once again as we take a look at the 24th Ultimate Challenge show, Hands of War, shown this past Wednesday night on Sky Sports here in Britain.
The broadcast began with action from the welterweight division as Andy Cona went up against Luke Newman.
This was a dominating performance from Newman. He took control as soon as the fight went to the ground, taking the mount and working into position so he could take Cona’s back and apply a rear naked choke for the very impressive submission win.
Then it was down to the lightweight division as Tom Maguire faced Joe Holder.
We saw an excellent display of ground fighting from Maguire in this one. As soon as the fight went down he dominated. Holder was on the defensive throughout as Maguire went to work, going for a couple of rear naked chokes, one of which Holder looked lucky to survive, before finally getting the submission in the second round with a kimura.
It was back to welterweight for the next fight as Lee Doski took on Bola Omoyele.
After two excellent ground displays it was the striking game that saw the end of this one. After Doski tried for a take down we saw a clinch up against the cage. From there Omoyele connected with a knee to the temple. Doski went down, and the referee quickly stepped in to give Omoyele the TKO win.
More lightweight action followed as Dominic Plumb faced Michael Pastou.
The only fight on the broadcast to last the three round limit was an intriguing affair. Pastou dominated the first two rounds with some excellent ground work, opening up a cut under Plumb’s left eye with his impressive ground and pound. Plumb just didn’t seem to have an answer to his attack.
Until the second round that was when it was Plumb’s turn to score with the early take down. However he didn’t have things all his own way as Pastou put in some great work off his back, going for a couple of kimura attempts before getting to his feet and finishing the fight with a clinch against the cage.
No surprise with the judge’s decision in the end as Pastou earned the unanimous decision.
The big boys of the heavyweight division were up next as Tomasz Czerwinski went up against Ian Hawkins.
I wasn’t expecting a technical classic here. This was a brawl, plain and simple, with big Czerwinski unloading with a barrage of haymakers that soon had Hawkins on the back foot.
Hawkins refused to go down though as the big man continued his onslaught, and he looked out on his feet as the referee saved him from further punishment to give Czerwinski the TKO win.
The main event saw Nick Chapman challenging Jimi Manuwa for the Light Heavyweight title.
Chapman went for the early take down here, but after Manuwa defended they engaged in a clinch up against the cage.
It wasn’t long before Manuwa got into a position where he could deliver a series of left knees to Chapman, moving from head to body to leg, opening up a big cut on Chapman’s forehead, with the referee stepping in as the blood poured down the challenger’s face, giving Manuwa the title retaining TKO win.
In conclusion - the 24th show under the Ultimate Challenge proved to be a highly entertaining affair that gave us great displays of the two main aspects of MMA, with some excellent ground work and nice striking. It was another example of British mixed martial arts at it’s finest, and it’s for these reasons that Dave O’Donnell and his crew are getting the big thumbs up from this particular writer.