EFC Africa 07 showcased 10 fights last week Thursday at the Coca Cola Dome that were a mix of ground and stand-up battles. The venue was once again packed and for the first time EFC Africa broadcast the event live via streaming video on their website, opening it up to a wider audience and, of course, to an international crowd.
Here is our review of the event, fight by fight…
Fight 1: (Featherweight) Clinton Nel vs. Jean Luc Kazadi [Winner: 1st round by submission (Rear Naked Choke)]
The opening fight of the night was a real disappointment finishing 51 seconds into the first round. Kazadi opened with a punch that was avoided by Nel who then dropped in for a well-timed takedown. Kazadi sprawled nicely and flattened Nel out enough to spin around the top of his back and take a position where he sunk in both hooks and landed in some punches that loosened Nel’s guard enough for Kazadi to slip in his arm and tightly hold in a solid Rear Naked Choke. After flattening Nel out and applying the choke in for a few seconds Nel tapped out, handing the win to Kazadi.
Fight 2: (Light Heavyweight) Raymond Ahana [Winner: 2nd round by verbal submission] vs. Riaan Lombard
Nigerian team fighter Ahana took on a very confident Lombard in a fight that looked to be great. The fight started off with some wild brawling from both fighters and takedowns by Lombard, but ended back up with some aggressive punches that saw both men exerting themselves to the max from the start. Lombard managed another takedown to position himself in a full mount that saw Ahana in serious trouble. Ahana managed to escape and Lombard, being a wrestler, then managed to take Ahana’s back and saw him trying to slip in a Rear Naked Choke. Ahana, obviously having learnt from his last fight (and loss) at EFC Africa 06, controlled the situation well and turned into Lombard’s guard and then into a standing position to drop in some punches from above to end off the round. Into the second round both fighters looked exhausted and their exchanges looked slow and nonthreatening. The fight then went to ground due to a kick and Lombard again found himself in a full mount. Ahana gave up his back again and Lombard sunk in his hooks and tried desperately to end the fight with a Rear Naked Choke, but the strong Ahana separated the choke and Lombard, exhausted, could not finish off Ahana after this second attempt. The referee stood both fighters up and Lombard visibly exhausted and near collapse verbally submitted and outright gave the win to Ahana; a disappointing way to end any fight, but a good win to Ahana none the less.
Fight 3: Mawmande Mazithambe vs. Demarte Pena [Winner: 1st round by submission (Rear Naked Choke)]
A fast fight that started with Mazithambe throwing a punch that Pena slipped under and opened Mazithambe up for a takedown that saw him on his back and defending a full mount attack. Mazithambe decided to roll out of the situation but by escaping and rolling from under Pena he gave up his back and was in a worse-off situation. Pena capitalised and immediately sunk in his hooks, flattened Mazithambe out and slipped in his arm to apply a tight Rear Naked Choke that ended the fight within 51 seconds of the first round.
Fight 4: Josh Muller [Winner: 1st round by submission (Triangle Choke)] vs. Mike de Bruyn
This fight started off a little slower with the fighters choosing to feel each other out and pace themselves in the opening seconds. It was evident that Muller was looking to take the fight to the ground and he shot in for a takedown that saw both fighters going back and forth to get the dominant position. De Bruyn got the upper hand where he ended up in a full mount over Muller but from this position Muller tactically reversed the position and from a rubber guard Muller opened de Bruyn into a position where Muller saw the opening and tightly put in a Triangle Choke which swiftly ended the fight in the first round.
Fight 5: Francois Kabulu [Winner: 2nd round by TKO] vs. Ashley Calvert
A good battle throughout, this fight opened with Calvert throwing a kick and immediately going for a takedown where he managed to take the side guard of Kabulu. Calvert controlled the ground game from there and went straight into a full mount with ease where he rained down some great elbows. Kabulu managed to shift his weight enough to roll Calvert off and into a full mount of his own; he maintained his position on top and dropped some heavy punches but Calvert managed to fight it out and got into full guard. This ended the first round of the fight. Into the second round Calvert came out strong again and landed a big punch, immediately going for a takedown to control Kabulu from side guard. Again Calvert got into a full mount and was pushing Kabulu toward the cage side to then lay in some good ground and pound. Kabulu reversed Calvert again and found himself in Calvert’s full guard. This didn’t last long and Calvert managed his own reverse and went into a side guard. Calvert slipped up again and gave Kabulu space to reverse his position and from a full guard position Kabulu set in with some very heavy punches and left Calvert covering up and not fighting back to the point of the referee stopping the fight due to a TKO.
Fight 6: Armand de Bruyn vs. Liam Cleland [Winner: 1st round by submission (Rear Naked Choke)]
Liam Cleland came out of his MMA retirement to fight against debut pro fighter Armand de Bruyn. The fight started well with the two exchanging some punches and looking for an opening to capitalise on. De Bruyn saw his opportunity and took Cleland to the mat with a decent hip throw. Cleland quickly reversed the takedown and took side control of de Bruyn and, straight away, went into a full mount where he was looking to do some damage. De Bruyn tried to escape the ground and pound but gave up his back in the process. Cleland immediately went to take de Bruyn’s neck and was looking to sink in his hooks and his arm to choke him out. Although de Bruyn did defend the position for a short while Cleland’s patience paid off and he got the choke. de Bruyn tapped out giving Cleland the win.
Fight 7: Victor Anyaogu vs. Leo Gloss [Winner: 2nd round, TKO (Fight of the Night)]
Fight of the night went to this fight for its excellent stand-up quality. At the start of the fight the two warriors felt each other out for a few short seconds but then Gloss threw a punch that missed its target and he ended up against the cage where Anyaogu came in to take advantage of the position. Gloss slipped under the attack, took Anyaogu to the ground and managed a full mount that was quickly rescued by Anyaogu and he ended up in full guard. The referee stood the fighters up after there was not much happening from this position and the two went straight into it again with Anyaogu landing some kicks and Gloss landing some solid punches. Gloss landed his attacks with more convincing punches and the round ended well for him. Into the second round and the two fighters went straight into it again, but Gloss missed a punch and slipped, ending up on his back and with Anyaogu dropping to attack in his full guard. Again they were stood up and some massive exchanges were landed and Gloss looked a little shaken after one connected well. Gloss then turned on the heat and landed a combo of strikes and knees that dropped Anyaogu’s guard and left Gloss dominating with his punches to leave the referee with no choice but to stop the fight and declare Gloss the winner by TKO.
Fight 8: Paul de Vos [Winner: 1st round by disqualification] vs. Ian Swart
One of the more disappointing results of the night had to be this fight. Expected to be a great showcase of stand-up fighting, this fight ended way too soon and for the wrong reason. As the fight started Swart quickly moved and managed a massive takedown on Vos, leaving the two men fighting back and forth for the best position. From half guard Swart started an attack with his elbows, but unfortunately for both fighters most of these connected illegally with the back of Vos’ head. The referee stopped the fight and when asked Vos said he could not continue fighting. Vos was taken off on a stretcher but was also awarded the win via disqualification.
Fight 9: Mawande Vapi vs. Nolan Swanepoel [Winner: 1st round by submission (Rear Naked Choke)]
This fight was both fast and very technical, with both fighters already known for being aggressive and calculated athletes. As the fight started a few exchanges allowed for Swanepoel to take down Vapi to the mat, but Vapi managed to reverse it to end in up in a full mount of Swanepoel. Vapi landed some ground and pound from his position but Swanepoel slipped under and out the back to reverse the position and fully mounted Vapi to lay in some of his own ground and pound, however brief. Vapi tried a similar escape, but Swanepoel caught Vapi’s back and sunk in an intensely tight Rear Naked Choke that ended the fight in a convincing win.
Fight 10: Ruan Potts [Winner: 1st round by TKO] vs. Calven Robinson
The main fight of the night saw two massive and experienced fighters go head to head. Ruan Potts took on Calven Robinson on fairly short notice after Rico Hattingh pulled out due to a training injury. Potts with a fight record of 10-0 faced Robinson with a fight record of 8-1 – so this fight should have seen a less one-side result than it actually ended up as, in theory. At the start the two heavy-handed fighters exchanged some massive blows before going into a clinch against the cage side that saw the more dominant clinch fighter, Potts, controlling the pace. Robinson tried to slip to his right and get away from the cage side, but Potts fought hard and quickly landed two knees to Robinson’s head, dropping him to the mat and allowing Potts to take full advantage by landing some massive punches that Robinson just could not defend and left the referee no choice but to stop the fight in favour of the clear winner, Potts. Looks like the heavyweight division just might be one of the more interesting divisions to watch out for at EFC Africa…
The next EFC Africa event (08) is set to take place at a new venue, Carnival City, on the 14th April 2011. Planned fights look incredible with Jacques Joubert taking on Garreth McLellan for the Middleweight title, Adam Speechly taking on Barry Duncan for the Welterweight title, and Wenzel Nel defending his title against the massive crowd favourite Costa Ioannou. We’ll release the full fight card once it comes out….
Photos by Zodiac Photos