Awais 'The Superman' Zaman (El Predators) Vs. Rob Pearson (Sukata)
FOTN was awarded justly later in the card, but if there had been a Round of the Night, then the first round of this fight was a sure contender. Zaman sought his place on the card and came in looking cut and in very good shape. Pearson also stepped into the ring in great shape. Both have boxing backgrounds so there was a striking tear up on the cards.
Pearson came out with good movement and hit several penetrating jabs immediately. They were pushing Zaman's head back, and a follow up right hand saw Zaman cover up against the cage, eating an excellent knee from Pearson. The knee pulled him into a clinch, and Zaman turned Pearson against the cage, who immediately pummelled into a guillotine attempt. It was a legitimate attempt and Pearson worked to pull guard and drag Zaman down to the cage floor. When there however, Zaman remained composed and slowly worked his defence, finally releasing his head. He postured immediately to an armbar attempt from Pearson, who released the attempt to grab both ankles and hit an excellent double ankle sweep into top position. Unfortunately neither fighter worked from bottom or top so the fight was soon stood up by Ian Butlin.
Pearson again threw some great straight shots coming forward, but Zaman was ready and hit a straight right on Pearson's chin that saw him lock into clinch immediately. After a short struggle they disengaged and each fighter settled into some movement. Zaman then threw a travelling four punch straight combination that hit Pearson flush three times, causing him to to shoot in for a takedown to stop the salvo. Zaman sprawled strongly and pressured against the cage where he threw some nice knees into the head of Pearson just as the end of the round was called. It was brilliant back and forward round with sob attempts and crisp striking a-plenty.
The second round saw a confident Zaman showcasing his movement and boxing. He had a superb stiff jab that came off a level change and a brilliant lateral movement. The end of the 1st had clearly taken its toll on Pearson, and although he was still moving, he was flatter of foot and less responsive. This lack of movement left him a target for the agile Zaman, who hit several combinations and showed great composure. He used the same movement to set up the finishing cross that hit Pearson right on the chin, finishing the bout with a very crisp KO.
I think both fighters came out of this bout with positives. Pearson showed that he has the ability to hit hard and work for dangerous subs, whilst Zaman showed excellent movement and an incredibly crisp jab. Pearson struggled with his cardio in the second round and looked flat, so that is certainly something to concentrate on for his next bout. If he can keep the pace of the 1st he will be a dangerous prospect. Zaman definitely has a future, and I would like to see him fight again in the BCFC. If he can successfully bring in some kicking to his arsenal he will be incredibly intimidating on the feet. A bout with a good Muay Thai fighter may see some heavy leg attacks for Zaman which could certainly make the fight interesting.
All in all, a great fight with a great KO. Hopefully more to come from both fighters!
Result - Win to Zaman by way of KO 2nd Round