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Crazy bear's back on Southend card
STAV Economou will have his first fight in Southend in a year in a headline bout with Polish strongman Kamil Bazelak.
The popular heavyweight will face the heavy-handed Bazelak in the octagon at the third edition of the AWOL Fighting Championship at Talk Nightclub in Lucy Road on December 1.
Economou was due to fight in Poland on Saturday in MMA Attack against unbeaten home favourite Michal Wlodarek.
But a problem with sponsorship has seen that show cancelled, so the man nicknamed Crazy Bear will now be the star attraction at south Essex’s newest MMA promotion.
“It’s great to have Stav fighting locally again because he has a big fan-base in Southend,” said Stav’s trainer and AWOL promoter Dan Burzotta.
“Bazelak is a national celebrity in Poland and has competed in the world’s strongest man competition. He’s a big guy and hits hard so it will be a good test.
“We know there is a large Polish community in London and I have already had lots of enquires about Bazelak fighting here. And, with flights direct to Southend from Poland, we’re expecting a good crowd.”
Bazelak is a black belt in karate and has a boxing and wrestling background, and a 0-2 MMA record and 3-0 in K1.
Economou boasts a 14-3-1 record, with his latest outing a split decision defeat to Polish national hero Damian Grabowski in front of a 10,000 strong crowd in April.
He has been training in Holland with Alistair ‘Demolition Man’ Overeem ahead of his showdown with Frank Mir at UFC 169 in New Jersey in February.
Burzotta said: “Stav has been training hard and is ready for a fight. And this is going to be a clash of two very big men. Both of them weigh in at about 130kgs so we might have to reinforce the ring!”
In addition to the AWOL promotion, Burzotta says he is also excited about re-launching his Ultimate Warrior Challenge (UWC) promotion in the new year.
He used to run UWC with his brother Alex Burzotta, who has now started a new MMA show called Heat Sports MMA, but Dan says he is now keen to draw a line under that previous venture at Garon Park.
Dan said: “UWC has always been my company and I will bring it back with a vengeance in the new year. Heat is a completely different entity.
“I hope to get (UFC Hall of Famer and Brazilian jiu-jitsu legend) Royce Gracie here to launch it and to get a big name in to headline.
“I also want to stage it at a new venue. I’m going to bring it back bigger and better than ever before.”
For more information on tickets and line-up for AWOL 3, log-on to www.awolmma.co.uk.