Georgian MMA fighter overpowers Russian opponent, voices support for Ukraine

Photo: Merab “The Machine” Dvalishvili/ Twitter

Georgia’s Merab Dvalishvili won against former bantamweight champion, Russia’s Petr Yan, over the course of five rounds in the main event of the UFC Las Vegas gala. Afterwards, the fighter expressed his support for Georgia, Ukraine, freedom and peace.

Throughout the course of the bout, Dvalishvili attempted an astounding 48 takedowns, breaking the previous record. The Georgian fighter celebrated the biggest victory of his career after the judges’ 50-45 decision in his favor.

Petr Yan was unable to successfully position his attacks because of Dvalishvili’s strategy of relentlessly pursuing takedowns. The odds of Yan making a comeback were limited with five minutes left in the last round, and Dvalishvili kept moving forward, punching and attempting takedowns. - Dvalishvili’s victory is also a symbolic win against Russia, as Moscow is constantly trying to take over Ukraine by force and destabilize a number of surrounding countries, including Georgia.

The Georgian fighter made it plain that he would not compete for the championship while his buddy Aljamain Sterling is still the current UFC bantamweight champion. Instead, he hopes to hold off on challenging for the title until Sterling advances to a higher weight class.