All eyes on ‘Beasty Barbie’ while Kabesa braces for heavier threat

South Africa’s DR. Danella Eliasov (left) and Italy’s Beasty Barbie Chiara Penco (right) face-off ahead of EFC 67.

Johannesburg, South Africa – The EFC women’s strawweight division took the penultimate step to crowning its first champion, when contenders Dr. Danella Eliasov (South Africa) and Chiara Penco (Italy) stepped onto the scale today, ahead of tomorrow night’s EFC 67 event, live at Carnival City, JHB.

Eliasov and ‘Beasty Barbie’ Penco faced-off for the final time before they collide in the Hexagon. For only the second time in the organisation’s history, a women’s championship fight will headline a card.

“I have been waiting a long time for this,” said Eliasov. “It’s a massive moment for SA women’s MMA, it’s a massive opportunity.”

“I feel good and can’t wait for tomorrow night,” said Penco, relishing her first outing to compete outside of Italy. “I will fight until the end!”

In the co-main event, featherweight champion Igeu Kabesa takes on the dangerous Brazilian Paulo Silva, at a heavier lightweight. Kabesa was his typical animated and athletic self while Silva, who weighed-in a staggering 3kg’s over, hurled insults during their face-off

“I’m happy to be here,” said Silva, making his EFC debut tomorrow night. “I am going to beat the champion, and it will be easy.”

“He chose the wrong guy,” replied Kabesa, full of his trademark ‘smiley’ grin. “A change of opponent doesn’t change anything.”

The Netherlands’ undefeated Reinier de Ridder makes his EFC debut tomorrow. A renowned Brazilian Jiu Jitsu specialist, he towered over his opponent, Bloemfontein’s Warren Allison, in their face-off. Allison is no slouch on the ground, with most of his victories coming from submission.
Known as one of the most violent men in the organisation, Gordon Roodman faces former TF1 contestant and undefeated Mzwandile Hlongwa. While neither have been outwardly aggressive, fans can expect big action tomorrow.

Set to open the main card with lightning fast action, fan favourite, Bokang Masunyane will be hunting his fifth straight win, this time against England’s Coner Hignett. The two flyweights have been at each other’s throats with promises of an early finish since the fight was announced. Facing off, the enmity was intensified, with Masunyane openly goading the Englishman.

Paulo Siva and TC Khusu did not make weight, and will take financial penalties.

The official EFC 67 weights are:

Fight 1: Lightweight
Serge Kasanda 69.10kg

Rodrqiue Kena 70.00kg

Fight 2: Catchweight
Roevan De Beer 58.20kg

TC Khusu 59.70kg

Fight 3: Light Heavyweight
Quinton Rossouw 91.80kg
Khulekani Hlongwa 85.00kg

Fight 4: Featherweight
Amisi Kabeya 65.80kg
Devon Cronje 66.00kg

Fight 5: Featherweight
Trezeguet Kanyinda 65.95kg
Steven Goncalves 65.90kg

Fight 6: Welterweight
Gunther Kalunda 76.10kg
Pietie Coxen 76.60kg

Fight 7: Flyweight
Coner Hignett 56.90kg
Bokang Masunyane 56.95kg

Fight 8: Middleweight
Gordon Roodman 82.90kg
Mzwandile Hlongwa 83.90kg

Fight 9:Middleweight
Warren Allison 83.60kg
Reinier De Ridder 84.00kg

Fight 10: Lightweight
Paulo Silva 72.9kg
Igeu Kabesa 69.30kg

Fight 11: Women’s Strawweight Title
Chiara Penco 52.00kg
Danella Eliasov 51.90kg

EFC 67 Eliasov vs Penco, Kabesa vs Silva is presented by Betxchange.com and takes place on Saturday 10 March live from Carnival City, Johannesburg. Tickets are on sale at computicket.com, and the 5 main card bouts will be broadcast live on kwesesports.com (Sub-Saharan Africa), Kwesé Free Sports 1 (Kenya & Rwanda) and live in South Africa on SABC 3 starting at 21:00 (CAT). Full broadcast details available on efcworldwide.com.