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UFC 228: Darren Stewart’s power earns him second-round stoppage

Hard-hitting British middleweight secures back-to-back victories with a TKO finish of Charles Byrd at UFC 228

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Intensiti Fighter Management

London middleweight Darren ‘The Dentist’ Stewart came back from a tricky opening round to finish American Charles Byrd in the second round at UFC 228 in Dallas.

Byrd started the opening round strongly, taking the fight to the Brit and forcing Stewart onto the back foot.

But after being advised by his corner between rounds to let his hands go more freely, Stewart came out in the second round and used his fight-ending power to dramatically turn the tables on Byrd and secure a TKO finish.

Stewart unloaded a salvo of heavy punches, then connected with a short elbow that rocked the American. ‘The Dentist’ then followed up with further elbow strikes that sent the Texan crashing to the canvas as referee Jacob Montalvo stepped in to halt the contest at the 2:17 mark in the second round.

After the contest, Stewart admitted Byrd’s aggressive approach in the opening round caught him by surprise, and revealed that he was rocked by ‘Kid Dynamite’ during the contest.

“He rocked me a few times, but I’m from East London,” he told Joe Rogan.

“We’ve got a tough chin, that’s how we roll.”

Stewart’s UFC career started slowly, as his first fight was switched from a TKO victory to a no-contest, then his next three bouts resulted in losses.

But his TKO victory in Dallas puts him on a two-fight win streak as a UFC middleweight, following up on his emotional second-round TKO of jiu-jitsu ace Eric Spicely at UFC Fight Night in Liverpool in May.

Sanchez proves a ‘Nightmare’ for White

Diego Sanchez during my interview with him at UFC 200 (Pic: Per Haljestam)

Diego Sanchez during my interview with him at UFC 200 (Pic: Per Haljestam)

UFC legend Diego ‘Nightmare’ Sanchez delivered one of his best performances in years to dominate Brit Craig White and score a landslide unanimous decision victory at UFC 228 in Dallas.

Sanchez utilised his wrestling skills to good effect as he took White to the mat and kept him on his back for the vast majority of the contest, punishing the Brit with heavy ground strikes throughout the fight.

And White, who seemed a little off-colour compared to his past performances in Cage Warriors, simply had no answer to Sanchez’s smothering top game and heavy ground and pound.

Despite Sanchez’s dominance, he wasn’t able to secure the finish as the bout went the distance, with the 39-fight veteran running out the clear winner with scores of 30-27 on all three scorecards.

Freelance sports writer and MMA reporter with 19 years’ experience in the UK's national media covering major sporting events including UFC world title fights, Olympic Games, FIFA World Cup, UEFA European Championships, Grand National and the FA Cup Final.

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