EFC 73: Kalunda Captures Interim Title

Gunther Kalunda has captured the interim EFC Welterweight Title, defeating Jose da Rocha via unanimous decision in the main event of EFC 73.

Da Rocha attempted to get a takedown in, but Kalunda showed strong defense, grappling with him and nearly reversing things until Rocha got a slam in about 90 seconds into the round. Rocha was in control on top, both in side control and in the guard before Kalunda was able to get the fight back to the feet with two minutes left.

After catching a kick, Kalunda nearly got a takedown in, but Rocha countered it. Rocha got another takedown with 50 seconds to go in the round, where he remained in top position.

The second started with another clinch battle, and Kalunda attempted to get a guillotine choke in, bringing Rocha to the ground still with the choke in before letting it go. But Rocha managed to get the fight back to the feet and bring the fight briefly back to the ground with him in top game once more.

Grappling dominated the rest of the round, with Rocha getting the fight briefly back down again for a few seconds. Rocha attempted to counter a couple of punches from a charing Kalunda but ended up getting caught and brought down, remaining in bottom until the horn.

Kalunda got the fight back to the ground in round three, and this time unleashed some punching power and attempting to sink in a choke, nearly getting either a TKO or submission finish. But the referee broke off his attempts and stood both men up with about 90 seconds left, giving Kalunda a stern warning for grabbing the fence. Kalunda, however, got the fight back down and dominated for the remaining seconds.

Kalunda continued the momentum in round four by coming right after Rocha, remaining in dominating position as the fight went back to a grappling battle against the cage. The fight slowed once the two separated, but once again, once the fight went back to the ground, Kalunda seemed to be in control despite Rocha’s attempts at guard and a possible armbar. Most of the fifth round was a clinch battle against the cage once again before Kalunda got into top control once more in the ground game.

All three judges awarded the bout to Kalunda, 48-46.

EFC 73 Results:
For the interim EFC Welterweight Championship: Gunther Kalunda vs. Jose da Rocha
Heavyweight: Jared Vanderaa def. Elvis Moyo via TKO (Rd. 2, 2:00)
Featherweight: Steven Goncalves def. Sizwe Mnikathi via submission (rear-naked choke) (Rd. 1, 0:40)
Lightweight:  Anicet Kanyeba def. Cameron Pritchard via KO (Rd. 1, 1:32)
Heavyweight: Ricky Misholas def. Juan Bezuidenhout via TKO (Rd. 2, 4:52)

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