Suleiman, Dy shine at UAE Warriors Series - GulfToday

Suleiman, Dy shine at UAE Warriors Series


Tarek Suleiman celebrates after winning the light-heavyweight bout against Oli Thompson in Abu Dhabi.

Syria Tarek Suleiman stunned favourite ‘The Big Shot’ Oli Thompson to retain his light-heavyweight belt at the sixth edition of the MMA fight series UAE Warriors held at the Mubadala Arena in Abu Dhabi on Friday.

The Syrian won the bout against the English strongman — who has stints in the UFC, KSW, Bellator, BAMMA, IGF and ROAD FC — with a second-round stoppage

“This as an important result for me and my country,” Suleiman said. “I had only one goal tonight and that was to win. The Syrian people are smart and they have a big heart, and we welcome the whole world to embrace us.”

Despite billed as an explosive and a much-charged fight on the card — following a war of words going on for the last one month — the bout between ‘The Shadow’ Ahmed Labban and Amin ‘Fierceness’ Ayoub failed to live up to the expectations as the latter forced the Lebanese into submission, just four minutes into the first round.

Tunisia’ Ayoub clinched the welterweight title after he locked in a first-round arm bar on Labban to force his opponent to tap out.

Much to the delight of Filipino community in Abu Dhabi, Rolando Dy fulfilled his promise to his ailing grandfather to return home with the featherweight title following his victory over Yerzhan Yestanov.

Spurred by support from the crowd at the packed Mubadala Arena, Dy won against Kazakhastan’s Yestanov on unanimous points decision after flooring his rival twice.

Dy broke down during the presentation cermoeny and revealed that he had made a promise to grandfather who is on his deathbed at home in the Philippines suffering from liver cancer.

“Before I left home I told my ‘Lolo’ that I’m going to return with the title belt and to wait for me,” said Dy.

 “I thank the Filipino community here for being behind me tonight,” Dy said. “I was here to prove that we from the Philippines can do it on the big stage and anywhere in the world.”

It was Dy’s second win in as many visits to the UAE following his win at the Abu Dhabi Warriors, now rebranded as the UAE Warriors.

The Dy-Yestanov match was the only one of three title matches on the 11-fight card to go the five-round distance.

Emirati fighter Ahmed Al Darmaki suffered a first-round defeat to Azouz Anwar in their featherweight bout after the Egyptian forced his opponent to submit via a choke hold.

Cameroon’s Joures Dea needed just 35 seconds to overpower Russian Mogamed Abdurakhimov in the featherweight while Brazilians Bruno Machado and Juscelino Ferreira registered easy wins over Russian Yurii Gryschenko and Egyptian Ebrahim El Sawi in the lightweight and light heavyweight, respectively.

Moroccan Hamza Bougamza got the better of Will Aranguiz of Chile in the bantam while Australian Trent Girdham beat Brazilian Fabio Mello in the bantam weight.

Meanwhile, India’s Suraj Bahadur lost to American Dwight Brooks in the lightweight category.

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