Dwayne Mallon, no stranger to success in the cage, brought some more sporting glory to Drumullan when he captured the Celtic Gladiator title last weekend, this a prestigious MMA title.
Mallon took on Piotr Zurawski to secure the vacant 84kg Celtic Gladiator title on Saturday night.
The fight started well with Zurawski attacking the undefeated Mallon unleashing a flurry of punches before stuffing a takedown attempt and taking control against the cage.
However, Mallon soon established control in the fight using the cage to pin his opponent before starting to land knees to the leg of Zurawski.
Mallon continued to land some solid strikes from the top position but ran out of time before the end of the round.
The second round started just as brightly with Zurawski landing some good strikes until he threw a kick which was caught by Mallon, leading to a massive slam in the centre of the cage.
Mallon transitioned from side control to full mount and again managed to reign down strikes before Zurawski managed to scramble to his feet.
An ambitious spinning heel kick from Zurawski missed but was followed up well with an impressive leg kick to the thigh of Mallon.
Zurawski then gave up his back which lead to Mallon putting hooks in and ending the fight with a rear naked choke to secure the title and move to 5-0.
This completes an incredible journey for Mallon, who also boasts the EFR middleweight and ISKA 84kg titles.
“I know it’s a cliché but I put my success down to hard work” said the champion.
“Anyone close to me will know my work ethic. I train hard - simple as that. All those hours before a fight, running round forests, out on the roads, in the gym and the pool etc; that’s what it all boils down to - hard work and determination.”
Mallon trains with the prestigious IFS club, who base themselves in Cookstown and Antrim, and credits his success to those in the club who train hard together and enjoy each other’s victories.
“To get your hand raised makes everything worthwhile. It makes up for all the hard work.
“The fight went how I thought it would do. He came at me strong at the start and really let me know I was in a fight. I stayed calm and weathered the storm and secured a take down and then some GNP.
“I knew at the end of the first that his cardio wasn’t on the same level as mine. So I came out strong in the second and pushed the pace on him and secured another take down and some GNP, before I took his back and sunk in the choke. He was very, very strong but I managed to put him away thankfully” added Mallon.