'John was the better man' admits defeated Cathal Pendred

The Irish welterweight’s winning run has been brought to a halt.

– Paul Dollery reports from Las Vegas

CATHAL PENDRED HAS vowed to ‘come back better’ after being defeated for the first time in the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Pendred suffered a split-decision loss to John Howard tonight at UFC 189 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, which brought an end to the Irish welterweight’s five-year, 12-fight undefeated run.

“It was difficult for me tonight,” Pendred said afterwards. “John made it hard for me to do what we had planned on. I felt I would have the biggest advantage in the grappling but he was hard to hold down. He has great hips and he’s stronger than he looks. Hats off to him. It was his night and I’ll come back better.”

Howard said: “I knew my opponent was a good grappler and I feared the takedown so I didn’t let my hands go like I wanted to. I didn’t think his striking would be as good as mine and I was correct, but he’s strong in the clinch. His strength really surprised me, I didn’t think he’d be nearly as strong.”

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