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Ngannou sees off Gane challenge to retain UFC heavyweight title

Victory for the champion on a card that also saw the flyweight title change hands once more.

Francis Ngannou scores a takedown against Ciryl Gane.
Francis Ngannou scores a takedown against Ciryl Gane.
Image: Alamy Stock Photo

FRANCIS NGANNOU SHOWED a different side to his game as he successfully defended his UFC heavyweight title overnight in Anaheim, California.

A renowned knockout artist, Ngannou (17-3) utilised his wrestling and conditioning to overcome interim title-holder Ciryl Gane (10-1) in the headline bout at UFC 270.

The champion posted the first decision victory of his career to get the better of his previously-undefeated opponent, with the judges giving him the nod on scores of 48-47, 48-47, 49-46.

It was a first title defence for the 35-year-old Cameroon-born fighter since he dethroned Stipe Miocic via second-round KO in a rematch last March.

Ngannou, who has been linked to a clash with heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury in the ring, said afterwards: “Boxing is always in the back of my pocket. It’s something I must do before the end of my career. It’s not like I have a lifetime here.”

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anaheim-california-usa-22nd-jan-2022-ufc-270-ngannou-vs-gane-credit-image-dalton-hammzuma-press-wire Francis Ngannou pictured after defeating Ciryl Gane. Source: Alamy Stock Photo

Although a champion’s clause will keep him tied to the organisation for now, there’s uncertainty over Ngannou’s future as the win over Gane marked the final bout of his seven-fight contract.

Earlier on the UFC 270 bill, the flyweight title changed hands once more as Deiveson Figueiredo (21-2-1) regained the belt courtesy of a decision win in his third consecutive clash with Brandon Moreno (19-6-2).

UFC 270

  • Francis Ngannou def. Ciryl Gane via unanimous decision (48–47, 48–47, 49–46)
  • Deiveson Figueiredo def. Brandon Moreno via unanimous decision (48–47, 48–47, 48–47)
  • Michel Pereira def. André Fialho via unanimous decision (29–28, 29–28, 29–28)
  • Said Nurmagomedov def. Cody Stamann via submission (guillotine choke) after 0:47 of round one
  • Michael Morales def. Trevin Giles via TKO (punches) after 4:06 of round one
  • Victor Henry def. Raoni Barcelos via unanimous decision (30–27, 30–27, 30–27)
  • Jack Della Maddalena def. Pete Rodriguez via TKO (punches) after 2:59 of round one
  • Tony Gravely def. Saimon Oliveira via unanimous decision (30–27, 30–27, 30–27)
  • Matt Frevola def. Genaro Valdéz via TKO (punches) after 3:15 of round one
  • Vanessa Demopoulos def. Silvana Gómez Juárez via submission (armbar) after 2:25 of round one
  • Jasmine Jasudavicius def. Kay Hansen via unanimous decision (30–27, 29–28, 29–28)

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