Monday, 22nd August
The rise of a UFC star
On Saturday night Great Britain's Leon Edwards, Ultimate Fight Club's latest sensation, knocked out Kamara Usman to win the welterweight title in Salt Lake City, Utah. Edwards, 30, was trailing at the fifth round and produced a high kick to stun pound-for-pound number one Usman from Nigeria. Edwards becomes the first British champion since Michael Bisping in 2016 and only the second in history. Leon Edwards hails from Kingston, Jamaica, and came to England with his mum and little brother to eventually settle in Birmingham. His first knowledge of Mixed Martial Arts came at the age of 17 after joining a gym where MMA classes were given. Edwards quickly took to the new sport and started to win awards. At age 23, Edwards joined UFC where he has now won 12 from 15 fights. From very humble and difficult beginnings, Leon Edwards has come through adversity to be crowned a champion that will inspire thousands around the world.
With a few rounds still remaining of the FIM Motocross World Championship, last weekend Slovenia's Tim Gajser wrapped up his fifth world title at the MXGP of Finland. Gajser is currently on 721 points, 106 clear of Switzerland's Jeremy Seewer in second place. The European Championship closed on Sunday in Munich. The multi-sport event attracted up to 4700 athletes from 50 participating nations, producing 177 events. The hosts Germany have also won the prestigious Nations Trophy, an award presented to the leader of the medals table. Hungary's Mark Devay and Germany's Celine Kaiser are the World Aquathlon Champions, forming part of the 2022 World Triathlon Multisport Championships. France's Pierre le Corre and Great Britain's Lucy Charles-Barclay are crowned the Long Distance World Champions at the same event in Samorin. The International Mixed Martial Arts Federation recently held the Youth World Championships in Abu Dhabi, with Ukraine and USA the standout performers.
In squash news, Rowan Damming became the first-ever Dutch player to win a WSF World Junior Squash Championship, while Egypt's Amina Orfi claimed the junior women's title. Tinne Gilis and Nicolas Mueller are crowned as ESF European Squash Champions 2022. England ended 22 years of hurt to claim World Squash Federation's Men's Junior Team Championships in Nancy, France. Canada beat Finland in overtime to win the 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey Junior World Championship in Edmonton. USA overcame Canada 12-10 to claim the World Lacrosse Men's U21 Championship held in Limerick, Ireland. Over to basketball where Lithuania are the new FIBA U16 European Champions after beating Spain 77-68 in Skopje, North Macedonia. This ends a drought of four straight final losses and the first win since 2008. Poland beat Portugal 13-5 to become the first World Beach Korfball Champions held in Nador, Morocco.
New Zealand's Peter Burling's made it back-to-back wins in the Sail Grand Prix held in Copenhagen on Sunday. New Zealand have moved to second in the rankings with Australia still in the lead. Italy have ended on top of the medals table at the LEN European Aquatics Roma 2022. Hungary came second and Great Britain in third place. Germany wrapped up a double gold at the 2022 ICF Canoe Polo World Championships in Saint-Omer, France. Earlier in the week Hungary became the new FINA Men's Youth Water Polo Champions after defeating Serbia 16-15 in the final in Belgrade. France's Caroline Garcia and Croatia's Borna Coric won the singles titles WTA/ATP 1000 Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati. Finally, Great Britain's Daniel Brigham broke the UCI Hour Record at the Tissot Velodrome in Grenchen, Switzerland. Brigham covered a distance of 55.548 km in 60 minutes.
Until next time, have a great week in sport.