Amanda Nunes wins big, Jon Jones squeaks decision at UFC 239

Amanda Nunes of Brazil knocks out Holly Holm of the United States during their UFC Womens Bantamweight Title bout at T-Mobile Arena on July 06, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (AFP)
Updated 07 July 2019
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Amanda Nunes wins big, Jon Jones squeaks decision at UFC 239

  • Nunes stopped Holly Holm late in the first round to defend her bantamweight title
  • Jon Jones was a significant favorite against Thiago Santos, a longtime middleweight who moved up in weight last year

LAS VEGAS: Amanda Nunes won in spectacular fashion. Jon Jones barely hung on.
Both champions still emerged from UFC 239 with their belts around their waists.
Nunes stopped Holly Holm late in the first round to defend her bantamweight title, and Jones squeaked out a split-decision victory over Thiago Santos to defend his light heavyweight title on Saturday night.
A two-division champion on a nine-fight winning streak, Nunes (18-4) remained the pound-for-pound ruler of her sport with her usual devastating flair. After she floored Holm (12-5) with a perfectly timed kick to the head, she mercilessly finished Holm with punches on the ground with 50 seconds left in the first round.
“I told my coaches I wanted to knock her out the same way she knocks people out,” Nunes said of her opponent, an accomplished kickboxer. “I did it tonight. She was the only former champion I didn’t beat yet. Now I beat her, and I’m very happy.”
Jones (25-1) had much more trouble with Santos (21-7), who nearly scrapped his way to victory despite injuring his leg early in the fight. Jones fought cautiously and earned a 48-47 decision on two of the three judges’ scorecards.
“He implemented a game plan I think a lot of people have wanted to for a very long time,” Jones said. “He did a good job. He exploited a hole in my game that won’t be there next time.”
Jorge Masvidal knocked out previously unbeaten Ben Askren with a sensational flying knee just 5 seconds into their bout on a card peppered with jaw-dropping finishes until Jones’ decision.
Jan Blachowicz also knocked out Luke Rockhold with a devastating left hand in the second round of ex-champ Rockhold’s light heavyweight debut.
Nunes took a few minutes to find her groove against Holm, who famously knocked out Ronda Rousey with a head kick nearly four years ago. When Nunes felt comfortable, she unleashed a sophisticated array of strikes and eventually caught Holm with a kick that sent her straight to the canvas.
Nunes completed the knockout with punches, sending Holm to her fifth loss in seven fights. After her fourth successful bantamweight defense, Nunes said she wants to defend the 145-pound belt next.
Jones was a significant favorite against Santos, a longtime middleweight who moved up in weight last year. But Santos’ power and energy caused problems for Jones from the opening minutes, forcing the champion to be cautious and to use his superior length.
“We all knew Thiago’s best chance was to knock me out,” Jones said. “I played it smart and brought home this gold for my family and team. He was technically a lot more sound than I thought. Thiago Santos is a black belt in Muay Thai. I’m proud of myself, because I stood with a guy who’s been kickboxing way longer than me.”
Santos landed several significant strikes in the first round, but Jones briefly floored the challenger with a big kick in the second.
Jones found his rhythm midway through the fight, using his size to keep Santos away. Santos also developed a right leg injury of some sort, although he kept striking even while he struggled for balance.
“I felt like I was winning, so there was no need to take him down,” Jones said. “We were playing a very high level game of chess in there.”


Princess becomes first Saudi woman to head sports club

Updated 22 July 2019
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Princess becomes first Saudi woman to head sports club

  • Princess Nourah thanked her hosts for the hospitality and outlined her ambitions for the team’s future

RIYADH: Princess Nourah bint Saad has officially become the first Saudi woman to be president of a sports club. Italian news outlet Corriere Della Sera reported recently that the princess had successfully acquired the Umbrian football club Spoleto.

Speaking at a press conference, the princess thanked her hosts for the hospitality and outlined her ambitions for the team’s future. 

“Football is a family passion, and Italian football is followed all over the world. This is why I chose to invest in Umbria,” she said. 

Princess Nourah chose the team after considering several aspects. “Spoleto is a small, amateur football organization where it is possible to work with the aim of growing and aiming for promotion. But we cannot fail to consider the value and beauty of the city of Spoleto, which is famous throughout the world.” Spoleto is a member of Serie D of the Italian non-professional football association, Lega Nazionale Dilettanti.  The association represents more than 12,000 football players and 400 football teams across Italy and is considered the fourth-ranked league in the country. Under the princess’s presidency, the team aims to ascend to Serie C in the near future, and further in the long term.

Spoleto announced that they have formally registered for the Excellence Umbria 2019/2020 championship and the Regional Junior Championship 2019/2020.

This purchase marks the Saudi royal family’s second venture into sports club ownership. Prince Abdullah bin Musa’ad co-owns English Premier League football club Sheffield United.