Ivory KOs opponent with devastating kick

Ivory steps up to fight for title

Richie Ivory is into the final of the BRACE MMA tournament. Picture: NONI HYETT

BENDIGO’S mixed martial arts star Richie Ivory has plundered his way into the BRACE MMA tournament final.

The Irish-born 28-year-old needed only one minute and six seconds to dispose of his semi-final opponent Ben Watson on Saturday night in Canberra.

Watson, from Sydney, had entered the fight undefeated in two professional fights.

Any thoughts of a third-straight win were soon gone, when Ivory unleashed a devastating head-kick to end the bout in the opening round.

He will meet Darwin ‘Sugar’ Sagurit in the final at the AIS in Canberra in November.

The Sydney fighter earned a spot in the final with a technical knockout win over New Zealand’s Byron Cowell, on the same card as Ivory.

It will be a much-anticipated final with the pair initiallyscheduled to clash for Ivory’s Australian bantamweight title a few months ago, until the Bendigo fighter was forced to pull out of the contest due to a broken nose.

Richie Ivory in training at the Fit Republic gym in Golden Square. Picture: NONI HYETT

“The doctors wouldn’t clear me, so he kind of used that in his post-fight speech, to say that I have been ducking him,” Ivory said.

“That will make for a good fight in Canberra.

“He’s like a tank – he’s about 5’3″ and a pretty solid little fellow.”

The Watson-fight was beamed live around the world on UFC Fight Pass, including to an eager audience of Ivory’s friends from Fit Republic in Golden Square, where he runs the MMA gym.

“All the guys from the gym were in another of the guy’s house watching it – there was like20 of them watching it,” he said.

“I think for this one in November we’ve got a big crowd from Bendigo going to Canberra.

“And hopefully a big Irish crowd of my friends – it will be a big show.”

Richie Ivory. Picture: NONI HYETT

Ivory will potentially have one more fight before his BRACE final.

He said the one drawback from his Canberra was having to partner behind, three weeks after she gave birth to the couple’s first son Rian.

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