Big wins for Irish fighters as Ukraine's Yaroslav Amosov unifies title before heading back to war-zone
"I’m happy because I think I gave my country a good day."
Bellator returned to the 3 Arena in Dublin, on Saturday, for their Welterweight unification bout. Yaroslav Amosov would rematch Logan Storley in a fight that would see the champion return to action for the first time since defending his native Ukraine in the war against Russia.
A great Irish crowd also welcomed some fan favourites such as Pedro Carvalho, Peter Queally and Sinead Kavangh. The night would be filled with some great moments, amazing atmosphere and highs and lows for the fighting Irish. Dónal Long delivers his take of how things played out in Dublin.
Amosov vs Storley
Yaroslav Amosov defended his welterweight title for the first time in front of an Irish crowd that showed him a lot of love. The Ukrainian fighter showcased some excellent striking and fight intelligence in his title bout.
Storley showed some great toughness and heart in his attempt to unify the titles. However, Amosov striking and takedown defence proved too effective against the American
Amasov now moves to a perfect 27-0 professional record. Who should he face next? The 29-year-old will take all comers, even the best of the UFC. He declared:
"Of course [I think I’m the best welterweight in the world]. I am here. If a UFC champion wants to fight, come to BELLATOR. Scott Coker will give the contract, and we’ll make the fight."
The unified welterweight champion will spend some time with his wife and young children before returning to Ukraine to help in the defence of his homeland against Russian forces.
"Ukrainian people, I love you.
"Thank you who helped my country, please don't forget what's happening... Thank you Dublin!" @YaroslavAmosov with an emotional interview after retaining his belt at #BellatorDublin 🇺🇦pic.twitter.com/w9MuGtew0h
— SportsJOE (@SportsJOEdotie) February 26, 2023
Carvalho vs Kennedy
It was not to be for Ireland's favourite Portuguese fighter. He faced a tough opponent in Jeremey Kennedy, who used his grappling to great use in order to neutralise Carvalho. The Portuguese fighter just couldn’t get going and tasted defeat on the judges' scorecards.
Kennedy felt strongly about his performance, despite not feeling his best self, “Even on my worst day, I can 30-27 this guy.” He feels his performance warrants him a shot at the featherweight belt calling out Patricio Pitbull. “That's the only fight right now.”
Queally vs Logan
Peter Queally did as he always does and got the 3Arena crowd on their feet as he walked out to an electricified crowd. Queally had a lot of success in the opening round with some excellent striking.
However, things did not go his way in the second round as a vicious elbow put the Irishman down and finished him via TKO.
Kavanagh vs Harding
Sinead Kavanagh showcased some great boxing skills and power in her rematch bout against Janay Harding. Her timing and power proved too much for her old foe, dropping
Harding in the second round. Sinead Kavanagh gets another win in Dublin with a unanimous decision, and wants to face Cris Cyborg in Dublin at the same venue, when Bellator returns in September.
Clarke vs Sinis
Ciaran Clarke extends his winning streak to seven as his dominant display over Sinis showcased his grappling skills. His 15 minutes of dominance made sure there was no doubt
when it came to the judges scorecards, all scoring the bout 30-26 in favour of the Drogheda man.
Moore vs Rozanski
Karl Moore overcame some big early shots and utilised his grappling in order to have a win over Rozanski. His unanimous decision win moves him to 11-2 in his pro career and extends his win streak to three.
Ward vs Shipman
Mike Shipman put on a good performance against Ireland’s Charlie Ward as he dominated across three rounds using his excellent wrestling. Shipman’s unanimous decision sees him
move to 15-4 as a professional.
Moore vs Iovine
In a fight where both men would have their moments, Moore and Iovine would go the distance in a back and forth affair. Showcasing his high level striking skills, Moore was able
to get the judges split decision after being hurt earlier in the fight.
Smullen vs Niedzielski
Richie Smullen fought off his opponents submission attempts well, regaining dominant positions on the ground on several occasions. He won via split decision after going the distance with his Polish opponent.
Kelly vs Johnson
Darragh Kelly showcased his skills in a tough fight against Dorval Johnson. He showed his well rounded mixed martial artist skills as he got a third round TKO finish.
Mokhonoana vs McIntosh
Kenny Mokhonoana had a quick night at the office as his first round TKO saw him climb to 5-0 as a professional.
- Reporting by Donal Long, for SportsJOE
- “No hand-outs. Did it the hard way” - Ciaran Clarke on Bellator 291, Drogheda, the future and more
- Conor McGregor's UFC comeback finally confirmed by Dana White
- On the Luas to Abbey Street with Pedro Carvalho as Bellator 291 approaches
- "I miss this. I'm ready" - Yaroslav Amosov returns from war to defend title at Bellator 291