Rico Verhoeven and Jamal Ben Saddik squared off in the main event of Collision 3 live on pay-per-view from GelreDome in Arnhem, Holland on Saturday, October 23. The five-round championship kickboxing bout featured reigning GLORY heavyweight champion making the tenth defense of his belt against top contender. In addition the pair met for the third time.
In their first fight held ten years ago, Ben Saddik defeated Verhoeven via second-round TKO (corner stoppage). Six years later the latter took the revenge, securing the win via stoppage in Round 5 with head kick and punches. Their third fight also ended prior to the final bell.
Rico Verhoeven vs Jamal Ben Saddik 3
The first half of the opening round saw a fairly slow start, as both fighters seemed be trying to figure each other other. Moments after the crowd started to boo, Ben Saddik delivered a powerful one-two combination, as well as tagged Verhoeven right before the bell, which one can say looked like a knockdown.
As soon as the bell rang to start Round 2, K-1 veteran referee Atsushi Onari called for the ringside doctor do assess a massive cut on Ben Saddik’s shin. When the fight resumed the challenger started poking the champion with the jab followed by big right, which dropped the latter to the canvas.
Verhoeven, who got cut under his left eye, beat the eight count, but Ben Saddik was right in his face again, trying to dominate and land more heavy shots. Half way through the round the champion started to fight back and deliver bombs of his own.
The referee had stop the fight once again, and that was time to assess, a huge cut and swelling under Verhoeven’s left eye. The doctor let the fight to continue, and Verhoeven moved forwarded aspiring to pay Ben Saddik back, but, during the exchange, lost his mouthpiece. The last thirty seconds of the fight saw both fighters swinging.
At the beginning of the third round Verhoeven started to work, delivering big punches and knees. Ben Saddik, who looked much more tired than his opponent, landed a few back.
Verhoeven lost his mouthpiece once again, but didn’t get a warning.
On the last minute of the third round Ben Saddik looked exhausted and had his hands fairly low. Although he was basically taking punishment from Verhoeven, who was delivering one punch after another, he did try to respond throwing a few back.
At the very start of Round 4, referee stopped the fight and gave Verhoeven a warning for dropping his mouthpiece.
As soon the action began Verhoeven threw a couple of punches to the body. Then, being on a mission to stop Ben Saddik, he went for the head.
After a few shots landed Ben Saddik turned sideways, and was basically hanging on the ropes. While receiving an eight count he seemed to be trying to express that he got hit at the back of the head.
After the referee reached eight he asked Ben Saddik if he was okay and was going to continue. With no positive answer received he waved the fight off, and that was it.
The fight officially ended at 56 seconds into the fourth round.
With the win Rico Verhoeven makes the tenth successful defense of his GLORY heavyweight title and wins the trilogy against Jamal Ben Saddik.
In the evening’s co-feature kickboxing star Gokhan Saki made a victorious ring return with the second-round TKO again James McSweeney.
Get the full GLORY Collision 3 results.