Interesting night all round at Cage Warriors 62, live and dangerous from Newcastle’s Metro Arena on Saturday. A card ravaged by injuries, and last-minute bouts being removed from the card, including the main event between Seery vs Gomez, after ‘Useless’ collapsed at the weigh-ins after an especially strenuous weight-cut. Danny Roberts’ third choice last-minute opponent also failed his fight day medical, so that tussle was also nixed.
Now then, being a fan of the Cage Warriors product, I dutifully subscribed to Premier Sports to watch it on telly, rather than hunched over a laptop. Perhaps it was Premier’s rather shitty treatment of their MMA subscribers that made Cage Warriors decide to stream the whole event free online. Rather than show the main card in full, Premier decided to show some ice hockey, before dropping in mid-event. For an hour. I ask you – what kind of moron watches British ice hockey?! Not even the big leagues, the match was between Neath Shitbirds vs Bolton Ballbags or some dumb juxtaposition of that. I tuned in during the wrap-up element of it. I know some of you were keyboard warriors about the dynamic between Pearce and Gooden on the UFC UK coverage, but this made them look like Ant & Dec compared to the rank amateurism on display from the hockey anchor and his ‘captive’.
As any good MMA fan knows, you should immediately jump on Twitter to have a whinge about not being able to see the fighting. The irony of being the reverse of the usual bleeding heart complainer was not lost on me. “But you could watch it on your mobile?” I hear you say. That’d be fun for my invited guests wouldn’t it?! My trusty laptop with the HDMI output was having none of it. And then, something wonderful happened brothers and sisters. The IMMA community clasped me tightly into their bosom, and started to send me mobile friendly .gifs of the ending of the bouts I missed. Choking back tears, I passed my phone around, and soaked in every gasp when people watched Jordan Desborough’s brutal KO by a knee from Martin Sheridan. The subsequent wince when he faceplanted against the cage wasn’t so nice however. The BJJ masterclass by Ian Entwhistle when he pulled off a flying leglock into a heelhook on Liam James, in record time, made for essential .gif viewing. In fact, that was probably the whole fight!
Funnily enough, all the feel good factor I felt for the IMMA community quickly evaporated by the main event. Not sure if it was the cider, or Warburton’s pronounced black eyes, but I fancied Murch for the upset momentarily and said so. 40 seconds later, and I was subject to a torrent of abuse normally reserved for Tory MPs! In night of decisive finishes top-to-bottom on the card, Warburton scored the sub with a standing rear naked choke in less than a minute. I can’t even say if he looked good or not, being as it was a ‘blink and you’ll miss it’ affair!
The co-main, between Chris Fishgold vs Olivier Pastor, was for the televised portion anyway, the best fight by a long way. Three hard rounds, between the up-and-coming youngster against the crafty veteran. Fishgold managed to out muscle the more experienced French grappler for two rounds. Then Pastor changed tack for the third, and actually had a moderate amount of success, surprising Fishy with his varied offensive a few times. Fishgold took this one by unanimous decision 29-28, and immediately there was talk from some quarters that he’ll be on the title trail really soon.
The only other bout that Premier let me see, was a battle between undefeated scrappers Richie Knox vs Karl Moore. Although that was over early in the first, when Moore landed some heavy leather and Knox turtled up and the fight was mercifully stopped. A TKO win for Moore.
So, in summary the winners for the night were obviously Kurt Warburton, who opened his Cage Warriors account with a quick, decisive win. Chris Fishgold also showed that he can handle being drawn into deep waters, and has a sizeable gastank when needed. The losers were obviously me, as I missed most of it. And from what I can see, I missed a corker of an event! And Premier Sports are also epic losers, if they pull that hokey hockey shit on me again, then I’ll cancel my subscription, and spend it on 3x beers like Graham Boylan initially suggested months ago when the deal was struck.