The Hoops Basketball Centre in Barrow played host to the biggest night of Mixed Martial Arts that Cumbria has ever seen and several local fighters shone.

More than 400 people packed into the venue to witness the highest of highs and the lowest of lows from the 13 fights on the night, seeing knockouts, wars and razor thin decisions.

In the evening’s main event, Workington’s Jordan Holmes took on Bradford’s Yannick Mezepo to determine the new XK Amateur Welterweight Champion.

A strong start from Mezepo saw him land multiple takedowns, heavy shots and ground and pound to his opponent, hammering through his defences and having it all his own way.

However, as he began to slow down towards the end of the second round, Holmes used his experience to remain calm and stay in the fight.

Turning the tide in round three, Holmes was able to obtain top position and stop his opponent with a barrage of unanswered shots from the top position.

The co-main event featured another title tilt, as Cork’s Patrick Lehane dethroned light welterweight king Bart Krol via a second round submission.

Two-time World and European bronze medallist Lehane stepped in to take the fight with just two days’ notice when Krol’s original opponent withdrew from the contest with injury, making his feat that much more impressive.

Krol came into the contes riding off five straight victories and it was evident from the get-go that he wanted to get Lehane to the canvas and beat him up from top position.

Unable to do so, Lehane showed excellent footwork and balance to avoid the takedown attempts. At the start of the second, Krol was more successful in his attempts, dragging Lehane to his back before a scramble saw Lehane lock up the triangle choke and get the finish.

In what would be billed as England vs Norway contests, Ash McCracken nicked a razor-sharp split decision over Aleksander Virtanen after taking the fight on short notice before Virtanen’s Scandinavian counterpart Ortiz took the split decision win over Danny Fereday in the return leg.

There were notable wins for debutant Jack Barrass, who come into the fray only two weeks ago, as well as big victories for local fighters Mark and Craig Heasley, Jackson Salehi and Jamie Fitzpatrick.

XK co-promoter Ryan Thomas had particular praise for Sam Nixon-Popham commenting “the guy has a heart of a lion and a chin of granite. It what was a real Rocky vs Drago showing, Sam give away two feet in height and 10+ inches in reach but kept coming forward to duke it out.”

The joining of forces between Xtreme Kombat and BUDO Fighting Championships has boosted MMA in the region and with the event this past weekend laying the foundation, the next show on March 28 is shaping up to be must-see.