Windang Freestyle Fighting Gym heavyweight Brandon Sosoli has brought the Storm Damage heavyweight Mixed Martial Arts title to the Illawarra.
And as Sosoli said later, “I have worked too hard for this to be a short-term home for the belt.’’
Sosoli competed in the one night eliminator at Tuggeranong, ACT, last Saturday.
The event pitted four of the country’s best heavyweight fighters against one another in a knockout style format meaning that the winning fighter would have to fight twice on the same night to claim the overall victory.
The event started with the opening bracket of the elimination rounds in which Storm Damage crowd favourite, Andrew Machin, defeated a tough Mathew Wade from Orange.
Machin won this fight by knockout at 1 minute and 49 seconds into the first round.
The show then moved on to the second fight of the opening bracket to determine who would meet Machin in the finals.
A pumped up Sosoli knocked out James Lane, from the 28 Hundred Gym, only 19 seconds into the first round to secure his position in the finals to vie for the title.
The finals gave Sosoli an opportunity to avenge his only loss and it took him all five rounds to grind out the win by a hard-earned judges decision.
‘‘It is great to see Brandon get some recognition for the hard work he has put it, especially considering he beat the only guy who has been able to beat him,’’ Freestyle Fighting Gym coach Joe Lopez said.
‘‘It just shows the determination and mental strength he has.’’
The Freestyle Fight team is the only pro team in the Illawarra and one of the most active fight teams in Australia.
Sosoli’s team mates will be competing in Nowra on the Cage Conquest event at the Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre on February 23.