Unbeaten Robert Ruchala Stops Lom-Ali Eskiev for Interim KSW Featherweight Title

Robert Ruchala now has some meaningful hardware with which to validate his pristine resume.

The unbeaten Polish prospect walked away with the interim Konfrontacja Sztuk Walki featherweight championship, as he stopped Lom-Ali Eskiev with a burst of elbows in the fifth round of their KSW 80 headliner on Saturday at RSC Hall in Lubin, Poland. Eskiev (20-7, 1-3 KSW) succumbed to blows 4:30 into Round 5.

Ruchala (8-0, 5-0 KSW) overcame a rough start—Eskiev dropped him with an overhand right, then gave chase with follow-up punches in the first round—and settled into a comfortable cruising speed. He spent much of his time building a lead behind a stiff jab and kicks to the body and legs. Ruchala saved his best efforts for the fifth round. There, he took down Eskiev roughly 90 seconds into the period, moved to the back and hunted a rear-naked choke before turning to his ground-and-pound. Ruchala forced his opponent into a defensive shell, cut off avenues for escape and let fly with elbows until the job was done.

The 24-year-old Ruchala will now serve as a placeholder at 145 pounds while reigning champion Salahdine Parnasse pursues opportunities in the lightweight division.

Meanwhile, Team Renegade’s Tom Breese rebounded from a Nov. 12 technical knockout loss to Pawel Pawlak, as he dispatched Bartosz Lesko with a rear-naked choke in the first round of their middleweight co-main event. Breese (16-4, 2-1 KSW) drew the curtain 2:45 into Round 1.

Lesko (12-3-2, 1-1 KSW) executed a takedown and landed in side control roughly a minute into the match, only to be swept soon after. Breese applied some ground-and-pound from half guard, climbed to full mount and eventually progressed to the back. He flattened out Lesko for a brief moment, then turned his attention to the choke. Breese calmly snaked his arms in place and forced the tapout, authoring the eighth first-round finish of his career.

The 31-year-old Breese has won four of his past five bouts.

Elsewhere, Bulgarian Top Team prospect Oumar Sy kept his perfect professional record intact and did so in scintillating fashion, as he submitted Ultimate Fighting Championship veteran Henrique da Silva with a rear-naked choke in the first round of their light heavyweight showcase. Da Silva (19-9, 1-1 KSW) checked out 1:40 into Round 1.

Sy (8-0, 3-0 KSW) struck for a takedown inside the first 30 seconds, transitioned to the back and secured his position with a body triangle. Da Silva acknowledged a warning from the referee for a head butt and left his neck exposed in the process. The opportunistic Sy locked his arms in place, tightened his squeeze and prompted the tapout.

The setback snapped a three-fight winning streak for the resurgent da Silva.

In other action, Michal Michalski (10-5, 4-3 KSW) disposed of Erikas Golubovskis (7-2-1, 0-1 KSW) with a volley of elbows 2:43 into the first round of their welterweight confrontation; Yasmin Guimaraes (5-1, 1-0 KSW) was awarded a unanimous verdict over Emilia Czerwinska (2-1, 2-1 KSW) in a three round women’s flyweight contest, earning 29-28, 30-27 and 30-27 marks on the scorecards; Daniel Tarchila (5-1, 0-0 KSW) pocketed a unanimous decision over Wojciech Kazieczko (3-1, 2-1 KSW), drawing 29-28, 29-28 and 30-26 scores from the cageside judges; Damian Piwowarczyk (6-2, 3-2 KSW) buried Bartlomiej Gladkowicz (8-4, 0-2 KSW) with punches 2:40 into the first round of their light heavyweight encounter; Kacper Koziorzebski (9-5, 3-3 KSW) claimed a split decision—29-28, 28-29, 29-28—over Borys Borkowski (4-2, 1-2 KSW) in a three-round welterweight affair; Kamil Szkaradek (4-0, 2-0 KSW) took care of Patryk Chrobak (2-3, 0-2 KSW) with a rear-naked choke 2:22 into the first round of their clash at a 139-pound catchweight; and Andi Vrtacic (4-1, 1-0 KSW) punched out Mateusz Janur (6-6, 0-1 KSW) and pushed him back to the .500 mark 4:59 into the second round of their middleweight confrontation.
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