By Kieran Cobley
Cage Warriors’ return to Wales will be unforgettable with knockouts, submissions and stand out performances throughout the card.
The main event saw Sam Creasey create history as he became the first man in the division to retain the flyweight title.
After a tumultuous wait to defend his belt, with his previous opponents, Luke Shanks and Dylan Hazan (who was unable to fight due to medical reasons) missed weight, Creasey finally got the chance to create history against challenger Stipe Brcic.
The 34 year old wasted no time picking up the win, dropping the Croatian in the first minute of the first round with a lead right hook before jumping on his opponent to lock in a high elbow guillotine to force the choke.
Creasey’s immediate future now looks uncertain; at 34 years old, the RGA Bucks fighter might struggle to receive a UFC call up, with Dana White and UFC matchmakers preferring younger talent, while in Cage Warriors, there is no definitive top contender following Aaron Aby’s loss earlier in the night and Dylan Hazan missing weight the last time he tried to get to 125lbs.
In the co-main event, Oban Elliott made sure the Welsh fans at the Ebbw Vale Sports Centre would leave with a smile as he put on the best performance of his career to beat former middleweight champion Matt Bonner.
In round one, Elliott would go straight for the kill, attacking Bonner with calf kicks and forcing him up against the cage, rattling the former middleweight champion with his tight knit boxing and forcing him to shoot for a takedown.
Round two started with Bonner coming out hyper aggressively to try and re-claw the first round, but Elliott weathered the storm and kept his composure.
The second half of round two was a different story. Elliott was rapidly slowing, and Bonner started landing heavier shots and forcing “The Welsh Gangster” into more uncomfortable positions, mainly at the end of his punches.
The question going into round three surrounded Elliott and his gas tank: had the early going taken too much out of him like it had in his two previous losses to Mike Figlak and Madars Fleminas, or could he stick it out?
As it turns out, Elliott could more than stick it out, putting Bonner on his back three times with takedowns and ensuring he landed enough strikes to make it an easy decision for the judges.
Elliott took a decisive win on the score cards, with all three judges scoring it 30-27 to the young welterweight.
Aaron Aby had the feel-good factor coming into CW 142. The Welsh flyweight had won eight of his last nine bouts, with his most recent two wins coming against a former flyweight champion, Samir Faiddine and former bantamweight title challenger, Gerardo Fanny, and not only that, this was the first time in his career that he would be fighting on home soil.
Michelangelo Lupoli was tasked with ending that story and easily fulfilled that task.
Lupoli was causing Aby major issues with leg kicks on the feet, and when the Welshman could get the fight to the floor, Lupoli stopped any offence Aby had to offer.
In the end, Lupoli would take a unanimous decision win, with the judge’s scorecards reading: 30-27, 29-28 and 30-26.
Stephanie Evans and Jasmine Favero made their pro debuts at CW 142 in a rematch of their IMMAF fight from a couple of years ago in the women’s lightweight division.
Coming into the bout, Favero gave up a lofty six pound weight advantage to the Welsh fighter and looked noticeably smaller in the cage, but showed her opponent’s larger frame was no match for her technical ability.
Favero would judo throw Evans in round one and outclassed her on the feet two before finishing her in round two with some nasty close range boxing against the fence.
Lupoli and Favero could now find themselves looking at a fight on Cage Warriors’ first ever Italian card in Rome on 7th October after such impressive wins.
Luke Riley kept his undefeated record in the min card opener, knocking out Cherif Larossi in round two.
Round one saw Riley preview what was to come in round two, landing hard shots from the clinch and securing a takedown.
In round two, Riley showed his clinch is not somewhere you want to find yourself, rocking Larossi with hard knees to the head before executing a perfect boxing combination, finishing with a left hook to the body to put Larossi away.
On the prelims, Matty Byfield picked up a win in the heavyweight division after a suspect elbow knocked out Szymon Szynkiewicz, with action replays showing the final two elbows landing on the back of Szynkiewicz’s head.
George McManus would take his record to 3-3 after submitting Milton Alfonso Cabral in round one with a rear naked choke. At the same time, Owain Williams and Chris Bungard picked up decision wins in their promotional debuts against Sean McCormac and Erick Da Silva, respectively.
Cage Warriors returns on 23rd September with CW 143 in San Diego before heading back to Europe for CW 144 in Rome in early October.