The first of two title fights on the historic Bellator: Dynamite 1 card in San Jose, California pitted familiar foes against each other for the GLORY kickboxing light heavyweight title.
Cavalari opened with two low kicks and then whiffed on a right high kick, then snapped a body kick. A good right hand backed the Congolese fighter up momentarily. A combo by Mwekassa was countered by a leg kick from the Brazilian. Mwekassa threw a double jab which snapped Cavalari’s head back. Mwekassa doubled up on the left hook before Cavalari landed a right body kick. They exchanged punches to end a good opening round.
Mwekassa appeared to hurt Cavalari with a strong left hand early in round 2. A right head kick knocked Mwekassa down but it was ruled a slip so no count was given. Cavalari then was deducted a point for repeated holding. Saulo responded with a front kick to the face. More body work from Mwekassa to end the round.
Mwekassa’s high kick was blocked by Cavalari’s left arm as the two kept the action going in the 3rd round. A stiff right hand straight down the pipe connected for Mwekassa, who later slipped in an exchange. Mwekassa appeared to be pushing his strikes more towards the end of the 3rd and Cavalari landed a good punching combination before capping it off with a right high kick. Saulo finished the round with a knee to the body from the clinch.
Mwekassa started the championship rounds with effective body work. Cavalari just missed with a front kick to the face. Zack double jabbed Cavalari halfway through the 4th. Mwekassa went to the body twice and then Cavalari threw a right high kick and then fell backward on the exit. A clinch and two knees by Cavalari. Mwekassa’s kick was caught and a right hand by Cavalari landed to cause a fall but not a knockdown. Cavalari got the better of the striking exchange to end round 4.
Cavalari buckled the lead leg of Mwekassa on the finishing end of a combination. The repeated clinching and holding by Cavalari worked against him in his quest for a KO. Mwekassa’s mouthpiece came out with 90 seconds left. A spinning hook kick whiffed by Mwekassa’s head. A big right hand tagged Cavalari. A tornado kick landed on the body of Mwekassa. Cavalari kept head hunting with his punches. Both men raised their arms when the final bell sounded.
Official result: Saulo Cavalari def. Zack Mwekassa via majority decision (48-46, 48-46, 47-47) to become the new GLORY LHW champion
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