Saturday February 26th Wembly Confrence Centre London
Here is the latest card for Cage Rage 10 Deliverance, courtesy of the Cage Rage promo team. There have been a few dropouts- as they say; these guys fight hard, they train hard, and injuries happen.
Notable omissions include Chris “The Westside Strangler” Brennan, missing out on his first UK MMA appearance- Chris was looking forward to facing the explosive Brazilian Jean Silva (fresh from a recent training stint with Chute Boxe), but he will have to wait his turn as UFC veteran Leigh Remedios (originally slated to face the tough Robbie Olivier, another victim of injury) will rematch Jean for the CR World Title.
For those of you unfamiliar with the UK scene, don’t be put off- there’s plenty of international talent looking to make their mark in London on Saturday. Lets look at it fight by fight so you know what to expect.
Renato “Babalu” Sobral vs. Pierre Guillet, LHW
There aren’t many people in the MMA world who haven’t heard of Babalu. Winner of the 8-man IVC tournament back in 2003, he is one of the most versatile fighters around. If you want to fight him, he will destroy you with his superb technique. If you try to play a technical game, he will beat you up. His fight record is a busy one stretching way back to 1999, and the list of opponents he has faced reads like a who’s who of MMA. Since losing by KO to Chuck Lidell way back at UFC 40, he has put together a 6 fight winning streak. It doesn’t look like he intends to break that record anytime soon.
American Pierre Guillet has been fighting top European competition for the last few years in both the UK and abroad, but finds himself jumping up in class in this match-up. A rangy all-rounder, he has a polished ground game and switches from attack to attack fluidly and relentlessly. Comfortable on his feet or on the mat, he should be able todeal with anything Babalu throws at him, but as I said- whatever game Pierre plays, Babalu is a master at disrupting it and fighting his own fight.
Sol “Zero Tolerance” Gilbert vs. Curtis Stout MW
British banger Sol ZT Gilbert is one of the more explosive MWs in the UK. A great way to describe him would be street-smart, with fast hands and full of attitude! For an ex-boxer, Sol has a slick ground game, surprising many of his opponents with his sneaky submission attacks. His right hand has serious KO power (he broke it when he Kod his last opponent at CR9), but don’t think he’s one-dimensional. Yet to face a strong wrestler, it will interesting to see how he deals with his first American opponent.
Stout is well known as another striker, so it could be that a stand-up war is on the cards. However, Stout has been tapped more than a few times in his career- maybe Sol will be aware of this and will be looking to play a clever game.
Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos vs. Antony Rea LHW
For many, this is potentially the most exciting fight of the night. Cyborg is best described as a ‘Mini-Wanderlei’. Sloppy, yes. Wide open, yes. Exciting, yes! He loves to trade and fights with nothing less than 100% intensity. A Muay Thai stylist, he may find his Chute Boxe style hampered by the use of UFC style rules, but this isn’t his first fight in a cage. So long as he keeps his chin down, he should be fine, but his opponent may have other ideas.
Frenchman Antony Rea is a true powerhouse, and the word is he has no intentions of trying to avoid Cyborg’s strikes. An accomplished striker, he has found it difficult to get fights in Europe, having to travel to the US to find suitable opponents. How nice of Cage Rage to give him an opponent like Cyborg!
Alex Reid vs. Jorge Rivera MW
Alex ‘Reidernator’ Reid is another British fighter, and something of a veteran on the UK scene. He has been in some tremendous brawls, including epic contests against fighters such as Mark Day and Mark Weir. His fight with Weir is considered by many to be one of the greatest fights on UK soil to date, and even though he lost by TKO, he didn’t stop fighting until the very last second.
Jorge Rivera is returning once again to the UK, having fought here twice before. With a perfect record on UK soil but coming off a loss to Rich Franklin, he will be looking to add another tick to the win column, but may find it more difficult than expected against this training partner of Lee Murray.
Jean De Silva vs. Leigh Remedios LW
In a late addition to the scheduled card, brand new Chute Boxe team-member Silva rematches UK based-Leigh Remedios. In their first fight, Silva got a hard-won KO by a devastating kick to the head. Remedios decided to put thing in order by moving home, and has changed teams. Now training as a full-time professional fighter (still a rarity in the UK these days) he will be very aware of exactly what he needs to do to win against this unpredictable BJJ black belt.
Silva has one of the most unorthodox striking games in MMA (a fusion of Capoeira and Muay Thai) coupled with a very tight ground game (he holds submission wins against the majority of his opponents). If this fight is anything like their last match, it will be a war!
Mark Weir vs. Gabriel “Gladiator” Santos MW
Santos readily admits, his record isn’t great and he lacks experience. A sole loss to Cyborg, and he finds himself fighting a three time UFC veteran and one of the UK’s most experienced fighters. However, Santos is a training partner of Vitor Belfort, and his highlight reel looks very impressive. Of course, with editing anyone can look good, and the fact is Weir has the experience of fighting plenty of top class opponents.
Weir has got holes in his game, that’s for sure- he’s susceptible to being stopped by cuts and maybe lacking in the wrestling department, so Santos had better bear this in mind.
Jeremy “Bad Boy” Bailey vs. Sami Berik WW
‘Bad Boy’ Bailey is thought of by many to be a bit of a joke in MMA circles. His last “fight” ended in him being disqualified. He’s a big local draw though, and he has somehow managed to get his way back into the cage, facing a San Shou champ turned MMA fighter, Sami Berik.
Berik has improved in his latest fights, scoring a cut stoppage over strong wrestler Abdul Mohammed in his last outing. Mohammed bounced Sami around the cage, but the young Londoner kept his composure and elbowed his way to victory.
James Zikic vs Melvin Manhoef LHW
Zikic was one of the privileged few to enjoy a fight at the UFC’s only expedition to the UK, UFC 38. A professional boxer and K1 fighter who trains alongside Lee Murray, he is a technical fighter who has matured well since fighting Phillip Miller, but suffers from lack of recent MMA experience. Manhoef is a dangerous Dutch fighter with a reputation for trading. It will be interesting to see how he deals with such a patient and methodical fighter such as Zikic.
Andy “The Rock” Costello vs. Daniel Burzotta HW
Andy Harby vs. Robert “Buzz” Berry HW
Dave Lee vs Ricky Andrews WW
Rodrigo Araujo vs Andy Walker WW
Brad “One-Punch” Pickett vs Chris “The Freak” Freebourne FW
The undercard features a nice mix of up-and-comers and local favourites. Be sure that Brad Pickett will have a healthy crowd supporting him, all sporting their trademark hats. A new addition to the CR roster is Rodrigo, a young Brazilian purple belt now resident in the UK. Huge for a WW, he will look to make his mark upon Andy Walker in style in his first cage appearance.
So if you needed a reason, you now have to one to get along to Wembley in London and go and watch what is potentially the best UK show to date. With appearances guaranteed from fighters such as Wanderlei Silva and Lee Murray, it promises to be another night of non-stop action.
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