Britain Hart sends tooth flying, retains title at BKFC 51
BKFC champion Britain Hart did some damage to Melanie Shah in her successful defense at BKFC 51 this past Friday. In front of family, friends and fans at the Salem Civic Center in Salem, Virginia, Hart pummeled Shah, who earned her first BKFC championship opportunity with two consecutive wins against Mathilda Wilson and Sydney Smith.
Though Shah got off to a great start, going forward and getting on the inside, she was hit repeatedly with heavy right hands from her opponent. The most significant one came in the fifth round, where Hart popped Shah with a right hand that sent a tooth (!) flying. She retreated, and Hart attempted to get a finish with a flurry of punches, but Shah survived. In the end, the BKFC champion staved off the challenger, sweeping the judges’ scorecards to retain her championship.
You can watch the tooth-flying highlight here:
As far as her opponent was concerned, Hart said she was excited to have a tough test in Shah, who she expected to go forward for as long as the fight went on.
“I was expecting that,” said Hart during her post-fight interview. “I’m actually really happy that she stuck to that game plan because pressure fighters are the hardest to deal with. They keep coming. And if you can deal with a pressure fighter like that, you can deal with anything. So thanks for that.”
Full BKFC 51 Results
Britain Hart def. Melanie Shah by unanimous decision (50-45 x3)
Dustin Pague def. Joe Elmore by unanimous decision (50-45 x3)
Stanislav Grosu def. Blake LaCaze by TKO (punches) at 1:51 of Round 2
Bruce Abramski def. Mark Culp by TKO (punches) at 0:43 of Round 1
Joseph Creer def. Ronnie Glass by TKO (body punch) at 1:18 of Round 3
Harris Stephenson def. Brian Maxwell by disqualification (illegal grounded strike) at 0:29 of Round 5
Brett Fields def. Kaine Tomlinson Sr. by TKO (punch) at 1:39 of Round 1
Rick Caruso def. Landon Williams by TKO (punch) at 1:43 of Round 1
Ka’Sim Ruffin def. Daniel Gary by TKO (punches) at 1:26 of Round 3
Hart already has her next defense set
Ahead of her defense against Melanie Shah at BKFC 51, Britain Hart revealed that she already had her next opponent scheduled. During an interview with Damon Martin of MMA Fighting, the 33-year-old said the promotion wanted to have her travel to Thailand, where she faces Po Denman at BKFC Thailand 5 in November.
“I haven’t mentioned [the fight in Thailand] whatsoever, because I don’t want to jinx it,” said Hart. “I haven’t even really done paperwork, any conversations to the Thailand fight, because I want to focus on the Virginia fight, and I think I’ll be rewarded in the end. Really, I’m just first and foremost about the Virginia fight. After that fight happens, we’ll go back to work. For now, the start and the finish is Sept. 29.”
Denman is 1-0 in BKFC with a win against Tai Emery at BKFC Thailand 4 this past December.
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