Jesse Arnett predicts stoppage win over Ali Al Qaisi in UAE Warriors title bout

Canadian takes on Jordanian belt holder for the featherweight crown at Etihad Arena on Saturday

Jesse Arnett celebrates his victory over Gadzhimurad Gasanguseynov at UAE Warriors 28 in March 2022. Photo: UAE Warriors
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Jesse Arnett believes he has what it takes to win a first UAE Warriors title when he faces defending champion Ali Al Qaisi in the promotion’s featherweight title bout at the Etihad Arena on Yas Island on Saturday.

The Canadian has been in the mixed martial art game for more than 11 years since turning professional and enters the title contest with a 19-8 win-loss career record.

Arnett, 38, made a winning bow in the UAE Warriors, claiming a split decision over the France-based Moroccan Elias Boudegzdame in January 2021 before going down to American and former UFC star Ray Borg by unanimous decision six months later.

Arnett bounced back and earned his title shot with a unanimous decision over the previously undefeated Russian Gadzhimurad Gasanguseynov at UAE Warriors 28 in March.

“I feel I’m better in every area of this game,” the Canadian said at the pre-fight conference. “I am a better boxer and I am a better grappler. I have a better ground game and I’m in better shape coming into this title contest.

“This is my fight to win. I’ve just got to be patient. I’ve tightened up a lot of things, I’ve got a great team behind me right now. I feel I can get him out of there inside of 15 minutes.”

Arnett acknowledged Al Qaisi as an experienced and strong opponent who holds three featherweight titles since leaving UFC following two defeats.

“He hasn’t fought anybody in the top 30 and he’s going to find out that on Saturday night,” Arnett said. “I feel I’m in good shape. At my age, I’m still here and I feel stronger than ever.”

Al Qaisi, 31, holds three featherweight titles: the UAE Warriors belt after dethroning Korean Lee Do Gyeoum, the Titan FC belt, and most recently the UAE Warriors Arabia belt when he defeated Ahmed Faress at UAE Warriors Arabia 7 on March 27.

“I’m going to defend my UAE Warriors world champion title on July 2 at the Etihad Arena. Trust me guys you shouldn’t miss this one, it will be war,” Al Qaisi wrote on his Instagram.

The 13-fight card also include the bantamweight title contest between holder Vinicius de Oliveira (17-2) of Brazil against Iraqi Ali Taleb (6-0).

The second night of the back-to-back fight card will also see three new champions crowned in the UAE Warriors Arabia on Sunday at the same venue.

Palestinian Rany Saadeh (12-4) and Lebanese Fabricio Sarraff (29-10) battle it out for the inaugural UAE Warriors Arabia bantamweight title in the main event, while Egyptian Eslam Syaha (12-2) and Algerian Laid Zerhouni (9-7) meet in the co-main event with the middleweight championship on the line.

In addition, Jordanian Nawras Abzakh (9-4) and Algerian Sami Yahia (10-4) clash for the inaugural flyweight title.

Updated: July 01, 2022, 10:21 AM
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