Nathaniel Wood completed his climb to the top of the Cage Warriors Fighting Championship bantamweight division. Behind him lay Marko Kovacevic.
Wood cut down Kovacevic with a burst of accurate punches to claim the vacant bantamweight title in the Cage Warriors 84 headliner on Friday inside The Indigo at the O2 in London. The end came 3:41 into Round 1, as referee Marc Goddard jumped in to rescue Kovacevic (9-2) from further damage.
It was competitive for a time. However, Wood (11-3) turned the tide with a right hook that dropped the Swiss contender to a knee. The Team Titan prospect then pinned Kovacevic to the cage with punches before a short straight left and right hook finished the job.
In the light heavyweight co-main event, the unbeaten Kenneth Bergh submitted “The Ultimate Fighter 11” and “The Ultimate Fighter 23” alum Norman Paraisy with a second-round guillotine choke. Paraisy (15-5-2) tapped 2:13 into Round 2, as he made an unsuccessful return from a three-year layoff.
Bergh (6-0) bullied the smaller Frenchman around the cage, firing off heavy kicks to the body and a number of spinning back elbows. He struck for a takedown late in the first round, applied his ground-and-pound and carried some momentum into the second. There, Bergh executed two more takedowns, trapped Paraisy in a seated position at the base of the cage and cinched the guillotine for the finish.
Meanwhile, SBG Mainline rep Matt Inman battered and bloodied Brad Wheeler for the better part of 15 minutes, as he picked up a clear-cut unanimous decision in their welterweight feature. All three cageside judges scored it for Inman (20-9): 30-25, 30-25 and 30-26.
It did not go well for Wheeler (16-11). Inman lured him into the clinch and ripped into him from the double- and single-collar tie. Short elbows to the head and a series of knees to the body had Wheeler struggling to survive the first round. A late takedown made matters worse, as Inman opened multiple cuts on his counterpart with elbow-laced ground-and-pound. The scene repeated itself in the second, where Inman again engaged the Englishman at close range and piled up points. Wheeler mounted a mild rally in the third round, executing a takedown of his own before being swept out of top position. An ill-conceived heel hook attempt left him vulnerable on the bottom, as Inman unleashed a volley of damaging downward elbows.
Inman has rattled off seven wins in nine appearances.
In other action, Alexander Jacobsen cruised to a unanimous decision over Tom Green in a three-round battle at 155 pounds; Craig White took care of Hakon Foss with a guillotine choke 1:18 in the first round of their welterweight encounter; Steve O'Keefe submitted Sean Carter with a heel hook 2:10 into the first round of their lightweight affair; Thomas Robertsen captured a unanimous verdict over Phill Wells in a three-round catchweight clash at 177 pounds; Miro Jurkovic took a unanimous decision from James Webb in a three-round middleweight scrap; Sam Creasey tapped Iurie Bejenari with a rear-naked choke 3:41 into the first round of their flyweight tilt; and Darren O'Gorman submitted Bryan Creighton with a rear-naked choke in the second round of their bantamweight pairing.