If Jimi Manuwa is to fulfill his quest to one day hold gold in the UFC’s light heavyweight division, he will have to go through Jan Blachowicz one more time to do so.
A rematch of the 2015 match-up between Manuwa and the former KSW 205-pound champion was today announced as part of the UFC’s return to London on March 17th next inside the O2 Arena. In their first meeting it was the Englishman who took a decision in front of Blachowicz’s home country fans. This time around, he will aim to return the favour.
Manuwa comes into the bout on the back of a first round stoppage loss to Volkan Oezdemier, a win which propelled the Swiss to a title bout with current UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier. Prior to the defeat, a pair of knockout victories against Corey Anderson and Ovince St. Preux had ignited talk of a potential title bout of his own.
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Since the loss to Manuwa more than two years ago, Blachowicz has been the more active fighter, squeezing in six bouts to the Londoner’s four. The Pole is currently riding a two-fight win streak with wins against Jarrod Cannonier last month and, before that, a submission victory over Devin Clark at UFC Gdansk. Since the loss in his first meeting with Manuwa, Blachowicz has suffered decision losses to Corey Anderson, Alexander Gustafsson and Patrick Cummins.
Manuwa, meanwhile, had targeted perennial contender Glover Teixeira as his next bout — an idea apparently not shared by UFC matchmakers. Either way, an impressive win in the English capital will surely place ‘Posterboy’ well back on the track for title contention at 205-pounds.