Editor's note: This article has been updated at 2:50 p.m. ET on 7/10/20 to reflect additional information from the promotion.
It seems that when it comes to Norman Parke and Mateusz Gamrot, drama always follows.
The fighters look to settle their bitter rivalry once and for all in the main event of KSW 53 and unify the KSW lightweight championship. The pair have already met on two separate occasions, with unusual results each time. The first time, Gamrot (15-0, 1 NC) edged the fighter from Northern Ireland via unanimous decision at KSW 39, although Parke claimed Gamrot bit him during their bout. A few months later, they locked horns at KSW 40, but their fight ended in no-contest due to an eye injury after numerous eye pokes. Parke was attacked by one of Gamrot's cornermen in the cage after the fight.
Since their last meeting, Parke (28-6-1, 1 NC) captured the KSW interim lightweight strap after overcoming Marcin Wrzosek at KSW 50. “Stormin” is riding a five-fight decision victory streak.
Two-division champion "Gamer" will no longer be putting his lightweight title on the line, which would have been same title that he has been defending after winning it at the expense of Mansour Barnaoui at KSW 35 in 2016. The last time Gamrot stepped into the KSW cage, he dropped to the 145-pound division and edged Kleber Koike Erbst to collect the vacant featherweight belt.
“Stormin Norman” missed weight at the morning weigh-ins, with Polsat reporting he was three pounds above the lightweight championship limit. After both parties reached an agreement, Parke was allowed to try to make weight again at the ceremonial weigh-ins in the evening, but never showed up. The organization met with Parke and Gamrot, and the two later agreed to keep the bout intact, although the lightweight belt will not be on the line. The fight will still be scheduled for five rounds, and it is unclear whether Parke will remain the interim champ at 155 pounds.
The co-main event features a lightweight clash between former welterweight champ Borys Mańkowski and former featherweight king Wrzosek. Both made weight without any problems.
KSW 53 will go down in Warsaw, Poland, on July 11. The card will start at 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT on KSWTV.com and Dazn. KSW 53 will be the company's first event after the COVID-19 outbreak forced the Polish organization to take an extended break.
KSW 53 Weigh-ins Results:Mateusz Gamrot (155) vs. Norman Parke (158.3)*
Borys Mankowski (156) vs. Marcin Wrzosek (155)
Tomasz Drwal (185) vs. Lukasz Bienkowski (185)
Andrzej Grzebyk (170) vs. Tomasz Jakubiec (171)
Roman Szymanski (156) vs. Filip Pejic (155)
Artur Sowinski (155) vs. Gracjan Szadzinski (155)
Kamil Szymuszowski (174) vs. Michal Pietrzak (175)
Sebastian Przybysz (135) vs. Jakub Wiklacz (136)
* Parke missed weight by 3.3 pounds, and the bout has been changed to a five-round non-title fight.
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