Francis Ngannou retains heavyweight title after points win over Ciryl Gane at UFC 270

Powerful Cameroonian prevails by unanimous decision against former teammate

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Francis Ngannou retained his UFC heavyweight title on Sunday morning with a unanimous decision victory against interim champion Ciryl Gane at UFC 270.

The Cameroon star, who to that point had finished all 16 of his previous professional bouts, dominated his former sparring partner at Honda Center in Anaheim, California to eventually prevail 48-47, 48-47, 49-46. With the success, Ngannou moved to 17-3 in pro MMA, while Gane suffered his first defeat in 11 pro appearances.

Speaking inside the octagon immediately after the win, Ngannou revealed he had sustained a serious knee injury in the build-up to the bout.

“I knew that he’s going to be a tough opponent,” Ngannou said of his French rival. “No doubt. He was very good. The only thing that I had to do, and my coaches were reminding me all the time: stay composed, calm down, don’t chase him, trust yourself and we get it.

“It’s been an incredible journey. A very tough 10 months. Like three weeks ago, I hurt my knee. I tore my MCL completely, hurt my ACL. I wanted to [pull out] of this fight but I couldn’t see myself retreat from this fight because it was a moment for me to make a statement. I had to remind people that I’m the champ.”

Speaking afterwards, Gane said: “I’m so sorry for today. Congratulations for Francis. I’m very sad but it’s good experience. The future is in front of me.”

In the card's other championship clash, Brazil’s Deiveson Figueiredo reclaimed the flyweight title by defeating Brandon Moreno by unanimous decision in their trilogy bout. All three judges scored the contest 48-47.

Updated: January 23, 2022, 6:55 AM