Friday, April 6, 2007

Cage fighting grips East Lancashire

COULD East Lancashire be a hot bed of talent in the future world of cage fighting?

Three local mixed martial arts fighters will hope so when they enter the octagon for the first time at Catterick tomorrow and follow in the footsteps of Clitheroe's Michael "The Count" Bisping who rose through the ranks and cut his teeth at similar events.

Billed as the Pride and Glory, the event will see the threesome perform in their first competitive fights.

Burnley's Daniel Haword and Clitheroe's Karl Fowler both face amateur opponents, but Alexi Griffin, also of Burnley, will be going head to head in a semi-pro bout.

The Pride and Glory will be held at a 300-capacity venue, and is regarded as a great stepping stone to venture into professional cage fighting.

Bisping, who is a former member of Burnley Black Knights Kick-boxing Club, is now a big star in the world of cage fighting - a sport which has a huge following in the United States.

The Count, as he is nicknamed due to his
polish ancestry, broke onto the American scene thanks to reality television show and is now helping to promote the spectacle in the UK.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) comes to the MEN Arena in Manchester at the end of April, where Bisping will next be in action, and satellite television channel Bravo is featuring a documentary on the fighter next week.

To check out what Ultimate Fighting is all about tune in to Bravo and see Bisping in action on Bank Holiday Monday at 8 p.m. Or to see a sneak preview now, click on the link below and see him training on Pendle Hill.


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