On August 20th Absolute Championship Berkut arrives in the Russian city of Penza for ‘ACB 42 – Battle on Sura’. This card is a mix of some of the promotions most promising talent, some of their major stars, a superb fight for the ACB Flyweight title and a fight headlined by one of Russia’s most promising fighters Musa Khamanaev.
Musa is an all out Wrestler who shot to fame when he won the M1 Global title at the age of just 24 in a fight where he was very much the underdog but with a wrestling game that began at the young age of just 11 years old he took the highly favored champion, Daniel Weichel, down and finished the fight in under 2 minutes to claim the title in front of the Russian president Vladimir Putin.
Taking on the young star is American MMA veteran Bruce ‘Pretty Boy’ Boyington. Currently riding a 5 fight win streak Bruce has earned his stripes in a number of organizations including World Series of Fighting. A striker with power to stop the fight at anytime it will be a case of who lands first in this one. Bruce with strikes or Musa with the takedown.
As co-main event we have an excellent Flyweight showdown. The Flyweight division is fast becoming one of ACB’s most exciting with some excellent contenders on the horizon for whoever walks away with the title on Saturday. Saturdays fight is a classic MMA stylistic match up as we see striker and current Champion Velimurad Alkhasov look to defend his title against the relentless wrestler Rasul Albaskhanov. Both fighters have only had 4 and 6 professional fights respectively but in their short pro-careers they have caught the eyes of the promotion and the fans.
Champion Alkhasov is a patient and deadly striker with a fight IQ way beyond his 4 cage appearances. The winner of the ACB Flyweight Grand Prix it was his patience and precision that served him well through the tournament and ultimately in the final against the always dangerous and far more experienced Rasul Albitarov. After a comfortable and controlled 1st round Alkhasov was able to capitalize and finish the fight quickly after he was able to catch a kick from Albitarov and counter with a heavy right hand that KO’d Albitarov and sealed Alkhasovs place in ACB history as he was crowned their 1st ever Flyweight Champion.
Alkhasov will have a difficult test in his first defense as the 5 and 1 fighter Rasul Albaskhanov looks to challenge him and take the belt for himself. Rasul is a talented and aggressive fighter with a style that has already seen him earn 2 fight of the night awards under the ACB banner. After loosing his pro-debut in 2014, a fight he was winning but got caught in a triangle, he has never looked back or made that mistake again. On a 5 fight win streak his aggressive style see’s him move forward with hard kick, punches and spinning attacks to open up the opportunity for a take down. Once on top Rasul continues to work at a pace that many have struggled to keep up with. This ground game has seen 4 of his 5 wins coming by way of choke and if he can get this fight to the ground many favor him to take home the title.
Also on the card is one of ACB’s top ranked Welterweights Beslan Isaev. With a record of 34 wins and 7 losses Beslan is currently riding a 10 fight win streak. A great all rounder who’s elite striking and heavy hands are backed up with an excellent wrestling and submission game that have seen 30 of his 34 wins come by finishes.
Beslan faces the highly experienced American Brett Cooper. Cooper has spent the large majority of his career in one of the biggest MMA promotions in the World, Bellator, working his way up through their tournament beating former UFC fighter Kendal Grove to earn a shot at their Middleweight crown. Now moving down to Welterweight he has continued to follow his Middleweight mantra of fighting anyone, anywhere as he steps in to hostile territory to take one of team Berkuts best – Beslan Isaev.
Also on the card there are some fighters with a ‘one to watch’ asterix over their names. Firstly, the undefeated and very exciting Maharbak Karginov who’s deadly Jiu Jitsu have seen him make light work of experienced fighters like Denis Mutsnek who he finished in his last fight in just 1 minute 12 seconds and secondly the equally dangerous submission artist Abdul-Rakhman Temirov who has gained all of his 9 wins by finish and 8 of them by submission. Both face stern tests on Saturday as they take a leap up in competition to see if they really are the real deal.
Watch the full card below: