Daniel Way will be out to give champion Steven ''Steamroller'' Kennedy some punishment tomorrow night and earn a shot at Kennedy's Australian Fighting Championship Middleweight title.MATTHEW GALEA May 16, 2014 3:15am
The title won’t be on the line, but Daniel Way’s shot at Australian Fighting Championship Middleweight champion Steven ‘‘Steamroller’’ Kennedy has come quicker than expected.
Way will take on the champ in Albury tomorrow night at AFC 9.
Due to taking the fight at a week’s notice, Kennedy will not be putting his title on the line, but Way said a win would make his claim for a title fight stronger.
‘‘I had my opponent changed twice on me and each time they kept getting better and better and I’ve sort of got the top guy now,’’ Way said.
‘‘I’d love it if it was for the belt, but if I beat him, then I get a rematch straight away for the title.
‘‘I’d get the contender’s spot way earlier than I expected to, so it’s a great opportunity. I’ll give it a go and take it from him.’’
Way — who made waves at his last AFC appearance when he knocked out Brazilian Daniel Almeida in the first 80 seconds with a well-timed knee — has recently been signed by Thai gym Phuket Top Team.
He has also been handed a three-fight contract with AFC, which starts after tomorrow’s fight.
It is a mark of how far Way has come in a short time since swapping his focus to mixed martial arts and the fierce striker is making a real name for himself in the MMA world.
However, Way will have to get the better of Kennedy to stay on an upwards trend.
‘‘He’s got a good, strong ground game. His striking game has come a long way, but I don’t think he’s going to try and hang with me,’’ Way said.
‘‘My last two fights were against strikers and they were both going to try and stand with me, so I was comfortable, but this is my standard type of fight. He’s going to try and take me down and I’m going to try and not let him.’’
Way’s Real MMA stablemate James Londrigan will also be in action and making his AFC debut against Anthony Cowley.
‘‘I don’t know anything about him really. I’ve spent plenty of rounds sparring in the ring,’’ Londrigan said.
‘‘Basically I just try and stand with him at the start and if that doesn’t work I’ll take him down.
‘‘It’s just exciting to be on an AFC card. Hopefully it brings bigger and better things.’’
UPDATE: The CFA has downgraded its advice message.
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