The event marked the start of a landmark broadcast deal for the promotion who has recently partnered up with Cage Warriors to present the Cage Warriors Academy North West. The promotion has bagged itself a deal with renowned combat sports streaming service FITE.TV. FITE has a worldwide audience and is also the online PPV partner for the UFC, so this is indeed a very big deal for the promotion.
The event saw 19 bouts overall with 15 amateur bouts on the undercard followed by a 4 fight professional main card and boy did the fighters put on a show!
The first bout of the evening was over faster than it took for the MC to give the fighter introductions! Liam Molloy took on Wes O’Neill who was making his MMA debut – Liam came charging into his opponent and landed a nice straight left which stiffened up his opponent, after another flurry of punches Molloy landed another left hand which dropped his opponent and Molloy followed up with some precision ground and pound strikes forcing the referee to stop the contest at just 15 seconds of the first round.
Next inside the Shinobi cage was Sophie Keenan as she took on Lorraine Bellis – Both ladies were making their MMA debuts. Keenan quickly established her grappling, forcing Bellis up against the cage as she defended a takedown attempt which proved unsuccessful as Keenan took her opponent down and quickly established top mount before pulling off an armbar forcing Bellis to tap.
Former boxer Danny Dixon took on Danny Canning in a welterweight bout which sent the audience into a frenzy as he showcased his punching power, pulling off a tremendous knockout victory – Dixon opened the bout with a big right hook that caused Canning to buckle, he quickly followed up with a flurry of punches that put Canning on the canvas – A very dazed Cannon quickly scrambled for a takedown, forcing Dixon up against the cage, however, he couldn’t do much to Dixon on the ground, who managed to get the fight standing again – Here Dixon threw a spinning backfist, and immediatly followed up with a right hook which completely shut down Canning.
Sion Davies took his opponent Luis Da Costa to a split decision in their Flyweight bout, Conah Martin was stopped in the second round by Nathan Lambert, Damon Donald defeated Chris Caie in a Featherweight contest via some vicious ground and pound and Adam Darby submitted Keith Hughes via a rear naked choke.
In the final amateur bout, HAMMA’s Beau Gavin took on Tommy Martin for the Shinobi Lightweight Title – Martin started the bout well landing a takedown on Gavin within the first 30 seconds of round 1, following up with some good ground strikes – After a quick scramble both fighters got back to their feet and Martin continued to be in Gavin’s face landing with some decent shots – Gavin also got off some lovely shots of his own, and even landed a beautiful headkick whereby it fainted a knee to the head but switch it to a kick at the very last second.
It was the second round where Gavin really got into the stride of things, Martins aggressiveness allowed Gavin to slip his punches and land some nice counter left hands – Gavin then began getting creative with his striking landing some nice front kicks and spinning kicks before finally landing a solid right hand which rocked Martin – Gavin followed this up with some great ground and pound forcing the stoppage. This was a great fight for Gavin, and although it took a little longer for him to adapt to his opponent he still showcased some creative striking – There is talk of Gavin turning pro, and if that is the case there are some great fights for him in the near future.
Jamie Lee defeated Callum Gahgan via split decision and in the Co-Main event, Dylan McLoughlin defeated Matt Bonner by a very controversial split decision. McLoughlin himself seem very frustrated by his performance and seemed a little shocked and somewhat angry when he was announced as the winner, even saying to his opponent that he won the fight.
In the main event of the evening Bobby Pallet took on John Ofken of Paris, the fight was a somewhat anti-climax to an otherwise thrilling evening of MMA action, this, however, was not as a result of the fighters. Ofken started the bout with a flying knee attempt which Pallet caught and unfortunately as he landed back on his feet his knee gave way causing it to desolate – The bout was immediately waved off and a disappointed Bobby Pallet was awarded the win – What was looking set to be a thrilling contest between the two never came to be, however, we hope to have a rematch between the pair somewhere down the line.
Shinobi will return once again in the new year and now with a deal with FITE TV the future is looking very bright for this promotion – With a deal with Cage Warriors in place, the sky really is the limit for Shinobi FC.
Dylan McLoughlin def Mathew Bonner – Split Decision