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EFC Africa President Cairo Howarth slams 'internet sensationalism' following controversial stoppage in 'awesome' fight

One man's awful stoppage is another man's awesome fight.

EFC Africa

The EFC Africa 28 mixed martial arts (MMA) event, which took place last Thursday night (March 28, 2014) inside the Coca-Cola Dome in Johannesburg, South Africa, delivered an "epic" night of "high-octane African MMA."

That's according to promotion president Cairo Howarth.

In addition, Howarth thought the heavyweight slugfest between Christophe Walravens and Bernardo Mikixi was "awesome," despite the fact that "The Black Panther" was repeatedly struck in the back of the head en route to a controversial technical knockout loss.

Just a bunch of internet sensationalism, according to Howarth:

"The Walravens vs. Mikixi fight was awesome. Sitting Hexagon side, I had no feeling that the stoppage was handled improperly. It was heat of the moment, Walravens delivering standing hammer fist ground and pound, with Mikixi working for position to defend. Walravens was warned by referee Wiekus Swart to be careful of hitting the back of the head, who was monitoring the fight closely, and I felt he was reading the situation well. Bernardo rolled onto his back, a standard defensive position, and then verbally submitted, at which point Wiekus stopped the fight. In terms of the rules of MMA, I don't see anything wrong with the stoppage. In fact, the first inkling anyone in the arena had that there may be something wrong was after sensationalism hit the internet - which says a lot about how difficult it is to judge reality on a single camera angle. Bernardo was examined immediately after and had no head injuries to speak of, and at the time was not personally concerned with the blows. We've re-watched the fight, and fans need to remember that ‘back of the head' is a specific area. It's a narrow strip, running down the centre of the back of the head. It's not the whole area, from ear to ear. Walravens was angling his shots from the side, making every effort to avoid the danger zone, on a moving target."

Watch a replay of the finish here.

EFC Africa has been under close scrutiny following the death of Booto Guylain last month in Carnival City (details). Following a technical knockout loss at EFC Africa 27, the Capetown middleweight had to be stabilized onsite for head trauma. He later passed away from swelling/bleeding on the brain.

Hear more from the EFC Africa 28 event in the post-fight press conference video below:


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