Africa’s biggest combat sport promotion ended the year in spectacular fashion as the best fight card of the year delivered thrilling action from the very first punch to the last bell. In the main event, the greatest 145lb mixed-martial artist of Africa, Igeu ‘Smiley’ Kabesa defended his belt against the only man to have ever defeated him, Reinaldo ‘Guerriero’ Ekson.
After a back and forth first round, Kabesa went back to his root with suffocating top control wrestling, using sporadic ground and pound shots to create openings for a plethora of submission attempts. This game plan was so successful that it continued into the championship rounds as Ekson failed to escape the relentless back attacks of the Limpopo-based champ. The judges unanimously gave Kabesa the victory after which he wasted no time on the microphone to announce a run in 2024 for the vacant lightweight belt.
The co-main event was a far shorter affair as welterweight champion Mark Hulme successfully defended his belt for the first time against top contender Peace ‘X’ Nguphane. After evenly-fought clinch work up against the fence, Hulme hit a trip to take his foe to the floor and sink in the rear-naked choke to take the tap with alarming alacrity. The delight on the face of his main training partner Dricus du Plessis was evident as the world continued to wake-up to the incredible growth of African MMA.
The highly-anticipated war between two former champions saw Sindile Manengela and Sylvester Chipfumbu go toe-to-toe with the latter taking the judge’s decision, but it was the heavyweights who almost imploded the Hexagon as Reunion Islands very own Anthony Morel suplexed his gargantuan opponent, Sholto Luiters through the floor. That incredible show of strength was followed-up by a devastating display of ground and pound that gave the debutante from the Indian Ocean a second round TKO victory.
The opening main card bout was a technical kickboxing affair between Luanda’s Eduardo Barros and Johannesburg’s Nathaniel Komana with both athletes looking to counter each other with pinpoint strikes, and despite neither fighter landing telling blows, it was the Angolan who took the win on points. Certainly a highlight for the crowd was the face-off between flyweight champ Gift Walker and his challenger Nkazimulo Zulu who inhabit the main event slot of EFC 111 on March the 7th in 2024 when the greatest sport in the world returns to its greatest continent.
OFFICIAL EFC 110 RESULTS:
FEATHERWEIGHT TITLE FIGHT
Igeu Kabesa def Reinaldo Ekson via Unanimous Decision after Round 5
WELTERWEIGHT TITLE FIGHT
Mark Hulme def Peace Nguphane via Tapout due to Rear Naked Choke Round 1 (4:47)
Sylvester Chipfumbu def Sindile Manengela via Unanimous Decision after 3 Rounds
Anthony Morel def Sholto Luitera via TKO due to Strikes Round 2 (1:31)
Eduardo Barros def Nathanial Komana via Unanimous Decision after 3 Rounds
Diego Bandu def Flex Munwe due to Knock Out in Round 1 (3:35)
Steven Goncalves def Tapiwe Katikati via Majority Decision after 3 Rounds
Willie Van Rooyen def Mphumelelo Mngoma via TKO due to Strikes Round 1 (3:50)
Francis Martin def Nkosi Doyisa via Tap Out due to Mounted Triangle Choke Round 1 (1:57)
Sithembiso Hadebe def Moses Mokhari via Unanimous Decision after 3 Rounds
LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHT FIGHT
Siyaku Dumiso def Willem Smith via TKO due to Strikes Round 1 (2:45)
Given Majuba def Robert Swanepoel via TKO due to Strikes Round 1 (0:27)
FIGHT OF THE NIGHT:
Eduardo Barros and Nathanial Komana