Friday, 12 October 2012

UCMMA 30 on Sky Sports - TV Review

British MMA is on the agenda once again, and having recently finished my mini-series of Ultimate Challenge DVD reviews we’re going to jump straight back into Dave O’Donnell’s cage with a look at their latest TV show, UCMMA 30, shown this past Wednesday night on Sky Sports here in Britain.

The show began with kickboxing action as Aurelijus Kerpe went up against Andre McIntyre in the UK1 middleweight division.

This was very interesting. The feeling out period only lasted a few moments and came to an abrupt end when Kerpe began to swing for the fences. He was all over McIntyre like a cheap suit, putting him on the ground twice, although McIntyre disputed the first knockdown.

McIntyre’s problem was his reluctance to move away from the fence, which made him an easy target for Kerpe, and it was only when he moved to the centre of the cage in the second round that he had any form of success. He managed to back Kerpe up against the cage where he scored with a knockdown of his own.

But it wasn’t long before he returned to his hold habit of going back to the fence, and Kerpe soon had him in his backside again. The referee gave him an eight count, and when he stood up on rubbery legs the official called a halt to proceedings to give Kerpe the TKO win.

The regular MMA action began with a semi-final in the Middleweight tournament between Jimmy Millar and Jason Radcliffe.

Radcliffe came forward as soon as the fight began, going for a takedown after a quick combination. Millar did a great job of defending, and it seemed like an age before Radcliffe finally slammed his man down to the mat.

He then went to work immediately, controlling the action on the ground and eventually taking Millar’s back. Millar tried to take the back door route out before Radcliffe re-established control and went to work with the ground and pound, making it impossible for Millar to do anything. Radcliffe soon synched in a rear naked choke, with the referee stepping in to give Radcliffe the submission win.

More middleweight action followed as Andy Mojo Manzolo took on Louis King.

Many were wondering how King would get on in his MMA debut, having excelled in the UK1 division. Manzolo took the fight to the ground straight away in an attempt to negate King’s punching power, only to find himself on the receiving end of a guillotine attempt.

Manzolo managed to escape, but King soon reversed the positions, taking the mount and going to work with the ground and pound. King’s assault was relentless, and all Manzolo could do was cover up, so it came as no great surprise when the referee stepped in to give King the TKO win.

Then it was up to heavyweight as Carl Kingslow took on Paul Taylor.

Kingslow began by trying to keep his man at range with a few well-placed kicks, but when Taylor caught one of them he countered with the heavy leather.

The pattern of the fight changed immediately. In between clinches against the cage Taylor unloaded with the big blows, turning Kingslow’s face into a bloody mess, and when the referee saw the crimson mask he stopped the action and brought the doctor in.

And that was it. The referee quickly waved the contest off to give Taylor the TKO win. Not bad for a guy who was suffering from a chest infection!

The heavyweight action continued with the big boys of the UK1 division as Tomas Czerwinski took on Chi Lewis-Parry for the vacant title.

This was the battle of the brawler against the striker. Czerwinski’s tactic was simple, go for the big knockout blow with each and every swing. The only problem was that he kept telegraphing most of those shots, and for the first two rounds Parry did a good job of keeping his man at bay, using the Thai clinch to good effect to score with a succession of knees.

Big Czerwinski upped his game a little in the final round, but he still kept looking for the big KO while Parry, for his part, seemed content in the knowledge that he’d done enough to win in the first two rounds.

The judges saw it that way as well as Parry took the unanimous decision and the vacant title.

The championship action continued with Dayman Lake challenging Darren Towler for the Heavyweight title.

This lasted less than a minute. After both fighters tested the waters a little Towler connected with a big left that sent Lake crashing. The challenger looked like he was out of it as Towler went in for the kill.

Lake soon got back up to his feet and grabbed Towler’s leg as if he was going for a takedown. Towler connected with a couple of knees that sent Lake back down to the canvas. That was enough for the referee as he stepped in to give Towler the TKO win.

The main event featured UK1 catchweight action for the Superfight Championship as Luke Sines faced Jake Bostwick.

This may well be the best UK1 fight UCMMA have staged.

For three rounds these two put on a great back and forth encounter. Bostwick threw everything he had at Sines, but no matter what he did Sines kept coming back and repaying him in kind, opening up a nasty cut above Bostwick’s eye.

Bostwick’s fine work finally paid off in the final round. He finally managed to knock Sines down after a great combination. Sines looked out of it but managed to get back to his feet. However, the end of the fight meant that he couldn’t come back any more.

Which meant that it went down to the judges, and with one judge scoring the fight even it meant that Bostwick took the majority decision.

In conclusion - can you guess how this one is going to turn out?

Yep, you got it right. UCMMA 30 proved to be a great addition to their ever growing number of shows. For the first time the action was nicely divided between regular MMA and UK1 kickboxing action, and once again every fight featured some great performances.

As for my fight of the night I’m actually going to award two no-prizes this time, one for MMA and one for UK1.

The UK1 award goes to the main event fight between Luke Sines and Jake Bostwick, while the MMA award goes to the battle between Jimmy Millar and Jason Radcliffe.

So with that out of the way let’s wrap this thing up by giving UCMMA 30 the big thumbs up.