The huge featherweight championship rematch between Jordan Vucenic and Paul Hughes was officially rubber-stamped on Thursday when both men successfully made weight for their title clash at Cage Warriors 145.
Defending champion Vucenic arrived bang on the featherweight championship limit of 145 pounds, while interim champion Hughes came in a tad lighter, tipping the scale at 144.6 pounds.
The bout represents the biggest bout Cage Warriors could possibly make, as the eagerly-anticipated rematch was made official for Friday night at The Indigo at The O2 in London, England.
Hughes has long been thought of as one of Europe’s premier featherweights, but his rise coincided with that of Vucenic, who perhaps didn’t carry the same hype earlier in his Cage Warriors career, but now stands as the promotion’s premier featherweight.
The first meeting saw Vucenic edge out Hughes via split decision to earn a title shot against France’s Morgan Charriere. Vucenic then claimed another split-decision win to capture the belt, then cemented his spot at the top of the division with a second-round standing rear-naked choke submission of James Hendin, who had stepped in as a replacement for Hughes, who had sustained a neck injury in the lead-up to the fight.
But now, nearly eight months on from their originally-scheduled rematch date, Vucenic and Hughes will finally face off in the rematch, with both men holding versions of the Cage Warriors title, and unified featherweight title on the line.
Friday night’s event in London also sees the return to action of former Cage Warriors light heavyweight champion Modestas Bukauskas. “The Baltic Gladiator” took some time away to regroup after his stint in the UFC, and is ready to make an assault on the Cage Warriors light heavyweight division once again.
Standing across the cage from him will be one of the most seasoned campaigners in the UK. Lee “The Butcher” Chadwick is a former Cage Warriors middleweight champion and a veteran of 45 professional bouts in a career that has taken him through a host of big-name promotions, including Cage Warriors, PFL and Bellator.
Now Chadwick is looking to capture a second Cage Warriors title as he looks to make a run toward the promotion’s light heavyweight title in 2023.
Both men were in solid shape on the scale at Thursday’s weigh-ins, with Bukauskas coming in at a trim 202.7 pounds, while Chadwick hit 205 pounds on the nose.
Elsewhere at the weigh-ins, tempers flared between bantamweight contenders Luke Shanks and Caolan Loughran as staff needed to separate the pair ahead of their main card clash.
There were also two bout scratches following the weigh-ins. Salvatore Liga was not medically cleared to compete, meaning his bout with Liam Gittins was removed from the card, while Festus Ahorlu’s bout with Faisal Malik was also withdrawn from the bout sheet after Ahorlu reported weight-cut complications that meant he wouldn’t make weight for the bout.
Check out the full list of official weights ahead of fight night in London.
Cage Warriors 145: Official Weigh-In Results
- Jordan Vucenic (145) vs. Paul Hughes (144.6)
- James Sheehan (170.5) vs. Jamie Richardson (170)
- Lee Chadwick (205) vs. Modestas Bukauskas (202.7)
- Xavier Sedras (155.8) vs. Mehdi Ben Lakhdhar (155.8)
- Caolan Loughran (135.7) vs. Luke Shanks (135.6)
- Paddy McCorry (185.3) vs. James Webb (185.6)
- Ryan Shelley (145.7) vs. Josh Reed (145)
- Harry Hardwick (145.5) vs. Steve Aimable (145.6)
- Sean McCormac (186) vs. Oban Elliot (184.1)
- Adam Shelley (155.7) vs. El Hadji Ndiaye (155.3)