Monday 18 December 2017

Gritty Neil Seery loses via decision to ex title challenger at UFC Rotterdam

Neil Seery. Picture credit: Esther Lin / SPORTSFILE
Neil Seery. Picture credit: Esther Lin / SPORTSFILE

Tom Rooney

If were world titles were won on grit and resolve alone, Neil Seery would be the undisputed pound-for-pound king, but those compelling attributes did not suffice as the Dubliner lost via unanimous decision to Kyoji Horiguchi at UFC FN 87 in Rotterdam on Sunday night.

In the sixth bout of his UFC career, Dubliner Seery was paired with former world title challenger Horiguchi for the promotion’s inaugural showcase in Holland.

Seery faced the Japanese in the featured preliminary bout that was saddled with title shot implications. It quickly became apparent, however, that Horiguchi’s striking offence, delivered with lighting speed and pinpoint accuracy, would prove decisive.

Seery found himself on the canvas in the early goings courtesy of a clubbing left hook which set the tone for the three round contest. Horiguchi continued to punish Seery into the second, though was unable to halt the veteran’s forward march.

Seery faired somewhat better in the grappling exchanges but was unable to adequately compensate for the deficit in precision and volume on the feet.

The 37-year-old did rattle his foe with a pair of hooks in the final period but, aside from securing an unlikely finish, he had too much ground to cover on the judges’ scorecards.

Such was his unremitting will through the 15 minutes of bloody attrition, Seery received major plaudits on social media.

His record in the UFC is now 3-3 which, conceivably, may put his spot on the roster in jeopardy, but considering his bouts tend to be barnburners,‘2Tap’ is likely to be retained.

Of the four remaining Irish UFC fighters, only Aisling Daly has tasted victory in her most recent bout.

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