Mike Grundy pushes ex-UFC champ all the way in Wales

Wigan's Mike Grundy pushed former UFC champion Aljamain Sterling all the way before losing by decision in Wales over the weekend.
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Grundy, an ex-UFC contender himself, as well as being a bronze medallist at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, retired from freestyle wrestling earlier this year, shortly after turning 36.

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He didn't, however, retire from MMA, and took on Sterling as a late replacement in a ju jitsu match in the main event of 'Polaris 14'.

Both men congratulate each other at the end of their fightBoth men congratulate each other at the end of their fight
Both men congratulate each other at the end of their fight
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The contest went the full 10 minutes, with the two men barely touching the mat throughout, instead being content to hand-fight as both waited for the other to make a mistake.

"We have two high-level wrestlers, man," said Sterling in his post-fight interview.

"Sometimes it's gonna be like that - someone's got to make the first mistake.

"So that's pretty much what it came down to."

Grundy stepped in after Sterling's original opponent, Nathaniel Wood, secured a fight against Muhammad Naimov at UFC 294 later this month.

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He applied himself well, making sure Sterling was always kept at arm's length.

Next up for Grundy is a possible route into the PFL - home of heavyweight star Francis Ngannou and Youtuber Jake Paul - in 2024.

“My plan is to go to the PFL next year,” Grundy told Mancunian Matters ahead of the weekend.

“I spoke to the guy who is running the Europe side of things and he seems to want me in the tournament next year.

“I’ve got a goal to go and win it and then finish on a high.

“I’m just enjoying the process and enjoying the journey really.”

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