MORE FUEL TO THE FIRE
2 Championships still on the line tomorrow night at Carnival City, JHB
Johannesburg, South Africa – Weigh-in for EFC 82 took a dramatic turn at the EFC Performance Institute, Johannesburg today, with welterweight title contender Luke Michael missing weight on the scale Luke Michael (4-3). He faces former teammate turned rival Zimbabwe’s Themba Gorimbo (7-2) for the EFC welterweight strap in the Grand Prix Finals. And, South Africa’s undefeated Quinton Rossouw (3-0) clashes with Cameroonian powerhouse, Simon Biyong (5-1) for the EFC light heavyweight championship.
For a fired-up Gorimbo, it is about realizing a dream and becoming the first ever Zimbabwean champion. With Michael coming over the designated weight division, Gorimbo was even more heated than his typical self.
“Tomorrow I will be smart, quick and ruthless. I want to kill him!”, responded Gorimbo in his interview.
Michael’s confidence beaming through, he is on the verge of proving the doubters wrong and defying the odds. After a change in training camp from Johannesburg back to his home city in Cape Town.
“I am incredibly ready for tomorrow. Expect fireworks, my journey got me to this point and tomorrow I will take EFC gold!”, Michael claimed.
However, Michael failed to make weight in the given extra time, missing the mark by ½ a pound. In a video on social media, EFC VP talent explained, “The curse of the welterweight title continues. If Themba wins, he gets the title. If Luke wins, he gets shuffled back to the No.1 contender spot.”
In the penultimate fight of the evening, two men looking to create their own legacies in Rossouw and Biyong take centre stage. Rossouw is holding the flag for the ‘every man’, who works a full time job and finds time to train when he can. Excelling way beyond expectations.
“I am so ready, I can’t wait to fight tomorrow night!’, joyously shouted Rossouw.
However, Biyong has delved deeply into the professional athlete lifestyle since discovering the sport of MMA only two years ago. Training full time and painting as an outlet and secondary career.
“I am more than prepared and can’t wait to perform. Let’s go!”, shouted Biyong.
Both light heavyweights made weight and set the stage for ‘The Lion Slayer’ versus ‘The Heart of a Lion’.
With their eyes firmly set on the bantamweight champion, Faeez Jacobs, former champ Luthando Biko and the ever exhilarating Tumisang Madiba are set to collide with a potential title shot hanging in the balance. While respectful in their face-off, their ultimate intent and hunger for victory could be felt when they stood face-to-face. Madiba failed to make weight within the allotted time. He suffers a financial penalty.
Johannesburg’s Stefan Pretorius returns to action, this time at light heavyweight against the highly touted Durban prospect, Zaakir Badat. With just one fight in the organisation, Badat has stamped his authority on the division, with aims dead set on claiming EFC gold. However, he has the hardened Pretorius to get through first.
Kicking-off the main card broadcast sees two veterans of the sport go head-to-head in what is anticipated to end in fireworks. Former champ, Dino Bagattin looks to cement his legacy as one of the best to have ever stepped in the Hexagon as he reaches the end of his eventful career. Meanwhile, Pietie Coxen is out for a spectacular KO finish and elevate his name into the title talks conversation.
The official EFC 82 weigh-in results are as follows:
Fight 1: Heavyweight
Juan Bezuidenhout 263,1lbs
Simon Harle 262,4lbs
Fight 2: Featherweight
Tommy Strydom 145lbs
Warren Richards 145lbs
Fight 3: Bantamweight
Themba Mkhize 131,4lbs
Roevan de Beer 134,7lbs
Fight 4: Featherweight
Orlando Machaba 143,4lbs
Roevan de Beer 144,5
Fight 5: Lightweight
August Kayambala 152lbs
Sizwe Mnikathi 155lbs
Fight 6: Welterweight
Pietie Coxen 169,2lbs
Dino Bagattin 170lbs
Fight 7: Light heavyweight
Zaakir Badat 198,3lbs
Stefan Pretorius 199lbs
Fight 8: Bantamweight
Tumisang Madiba 137,2lbs*
Luthando Biko 135lbs
Fight 9: Light Heavyweight Title Fight
Simon Biyong 203,9lbs
Quinton Rossouw 204,6lbs
Fight 10: Welterweight Title Fight
Luke Michael 170,5lbs*
Themba Gorimbo 169,9lbs
EFC 82 Gorimbo vs Michael, Rossouw vs Biyong is presented by Betway and takes place on Saturday 28 September, live from Carnival City, Johannesburg. Tickets are on sale at www.computicket.com. Full broadcast details available at www.efcworldwide.com.