Coll, Hogan and Mlambo leave BattleZone 12 as champions

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UFC flyweights Neil “2 Tap” Seery and Paddy “The Hooligan” Holohan were on hand at BattleZone Fighting Championships 12 to present Stephen Coll, Thomas Hogan and Frans Mlambo with their belts as they walked away as champions on Saturday night in the Regency Hotel.

Coll showcased his grappling prowess on his way to claiming the pro BattleZone featherweight title with a victory over champion Mick Brennan.

Coll’s style sees him take a few shots to get into dominant position and early in the first he was already trying to tighten up a heelhook. Brennan escaped the submission and when the action was forced to the ground again the Sully’s product landed some good shots from side control.

Grabbing the tricep of Brennan, Coll managed to sit out. The final piece of action in the first came with Coll attempting a Ben Henderson leaping up-kick.

Brennan rocked the Rillion Gracie man early in the second as he combined heavy leg kicks with some straight shots. The highlight of the round saw Coll recover to attempt a Darce choke, but Brennan did well to defend the attempt.

The writing was on the wall when Coll took mount on Brennan in the third and it wasn’t long before he was tightening up a rear naked choke. Having been out of action since his June 2013 loss to Liam James, Coll will surely be satisfied with his return to the sport having claimed the BZFC title.

Amateur welterweight champion Thomas Hogan looked dominant on his way to claiming his third win over one of Ireland’s most active amateurs, Keith McCabe. Hogan looked slick in the first and dictated the pace with some excellent footwork and sharp straight shots.

After Hogan scored a takedown in the second, it looked like McCabe nearly had his patented triangle/armbar locked in, but the RFA champion escaped. The Balance fighter really came into the contest in the second and his effort made an impact with Hogan breathing heavily in his corner before the final round.

Hogan’s poker face was excellent though, and you would’ve never known he was tired given his grinding performance in the third. Despite McCabe landing a big right hand in the final round, the north county Dublin man definitely did enough to get the unanimous decision nod on the night, defending his title in doing so.

Straight Blast Gym’s Frans Mlambo and Evolve MMA’s Daniel Thompson put a beautiful display of jiu jitsu in their meeting for the vacant amateur bantamweight title.

Thompson jumped into a high elbow guillotine early on that looked like it might have forced the tap from Mlambo after he rattled the SBG man with a head kick. Slamming the Evolve man to canvas, Mlambo popped his head out.

When the action was back to the feet Mlamo grabbed a guillotine of his own and went to his back. Seemingly giving up on the choke, the SBG man trapped Thompson’s arm sweeping him into mount before finishing the bout with a high elbow guillotine.

Crediting his new Vegan diet for his move down to bantamweight, Mlambo certainly didn’t look like he had lost any power or energy in the action packed round that saw him claim the amateur title.

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Malahide MMA’s Eoghan Drumgoole’s aggressive style asked a lot of questions of Sean Keogan who was making his first appearance under the Straight Blast Gym banner since moving from C-MAC in an amateur 145 lbs contest.

The John Redmond product constantly moved forward throughout the bout and showcased fantastic power in his hands which he mixed up with some solid wrestling to claim the decision win on the night.

Team Ryano’s Paddy Neary made short work of Mark Flood in the only amateur light heavyweight showdown on the card. Once he forced the action to the ground, Neary locked onto a high elbow guillotine that brought end to the bout in the first round.

Ian Molphy and Keith Byrne met in a thrilling amateur featherweight bout at the event. Despite Molphy dominating the first two rounds, Byrne showed outstanding gameness to end both of the rounds with the Malahide man in a rear naked choke.

Kyuzo’s Byrne threatened with a guillotine in the third, but Molphy did enough to claim the majority decision on the night.

Joe Mady avoided a storm of techniques from Team Ryano’s Eric Nolan in the first round of their bout that saw Mady claim victory in the second round of the amateur lightweight contest.

Nolan tumbled into a guillotine, and when Mady escaped Nolan piled on pressure from side control. When the action went back to the feet the Ryano threw a lot of power at Mady who did well to keep the action alive.

The Kyuzo man took his opportunity in a fantastic comeback effort as soon as he got the back of Nolan in the second round and finished with the rear naked choke.

Other results (via @FigOFMMA)

• Alex Brophy (SBGi) defeated Barry Hanna (Malahide MMA) Via Technical Submission (Armbar) in Round 1

• Josh Boyle (Evolve MMA) defeated Dean Scott (Team Ryano) via TKO (Strikes) in Round 2

• Jack Sheridan (Team Ryano) defeated Alan Kavanagh via KO (Flying Knee) in Round 3

• K1 Kickboxing: Daniel Morrison (Evolve) defeated v Leighton Egan (Southgate MM) via TKO (Shoulder injury)

• No-Gi Grappling: Keneth McGregor (Team Ryano) defeated Conor Garvey (Southgate MMA) via guillotine choke

• No-Gi Grappling: Tommy Martin (SBGi) defeated Keith Kavanagh (Southgate MMA) via referee decision

@PetesyCarroll

Peter Carroll is Severe MMA's lead feature writer. He has been featured in many top publications and some rubbish ones too. He also writes for the Irish Daily Mirror and Vice's Fightland.