Last year, Peter Queally suffered a finish loss during a title fight in front of his home country, Ireland. Fast-forward to this Friday, he will look to show his supporters that he has bounced back when he faces veteran Benson Henderson in the main event of Bellator 285 from the 3Arena Dublin in Dublin, Ireland.
That fight is scheduled to headline a 13-bout card that includes loads of European talents. Also, the show will include a co-main event bout between veterans Yoel Romero and Melvin Manhoef.
Here’s a preview of it all.
Preliminary Card (1:00PM EDT / 6:00PM IST) (Youtube)
Bout 1: Dante Schiro (9-3) vs. Luca Poclit (7-1) (Welterweight)
Luca Poclit will make his Bellator debut in the opening bout of the card, facing Dante Schiro in a welterweight bout.
Poclit is currently on a seven-fight winning streak that has mostly taken place on the Moldovan regional scene. His last fight was in July when he stopped Dragan Pesic – a fighter who had a negative record of 18 wins and 28 losses – in 22 seconds with an anaconda choke.
Schiro is coming off his first Bellator win, which was a finish victory over Scotty Hao in April. Before then, he had a loss to Logan Storley in 2021.
Bout 2: Asael Adjoudj (3-1) vs. Jordan Barton (7-2-1) (Featherweight)
Featherweights will compete next, as Asael Adjoudj and Jordan Barton will face off.
Barton is returning to Bellator in this bout. He notably appeared for them twice in 2020, attaining a win and a loss each. He has since continued to compete in UAE Warriors, where he has picked up two more wins.
Barton scored his first Bellator victory in May, scoring an upset split decision win over then-undefeated Fabacary Diatta.
Bout 3: Alex Bodnar (4-1) vs. Kenny Mokhonoana (3-0) (Featherweight)
Undefeated Kenny Mokhonoana will make his Bellator debut on the prelims, facing Alex Bodnar.
Mokhonoana is coming off a rookie year as a pro that saw him score three wins via stoppage. His last fight was over in UAE Warriors in March, when he beat Alphonse Viny Bessala.
Bodnar bounced back from his sole pro loss in November 2021, beating George Tanasa.
Bout 4: Georgi Karakhanyan (31-13-1) vs. Kane Mousah (13-4) (Lightweight)
Bellator veteran Georgi Karakhanyan will return on Friday to face Kane Mousah.
Karakhanyan, a 20-fight Bellator vet, is appearing after losing to Adam Piccolotti and Saul Rogers over the past year.
Mousah is also coming off a loss, having suffered a decision defeat against Davy Gallon last year. His Bellator record is currently an even two wins and two losses.
Bout 5: Darragh Kelly (1-0) vs. Kye Stevens (3-1) (Lightweight)
Coming off a successful pro debut, Darragh Kelly will face Kye Stevens on Friday night.
Kelly made his Bellator debut in February, submitting Junior Morgan in the first round with a guillotine choke. He had an incredibly successful amateur record before then, attaining nine straight wins from 2017 to 2021.
Kelly will now meet Stevens, who has three wins and one loss. He is coming off a stoppage win from the regional scene in April.
Bout 6: Karl Albrektsson (13-3) vs. Karl Moore (9-2) (Light Heavyweight)
Light heavyweight fighters Karl Albrektsson and Karl Moore will compete next.
Albrektsson has built himself up in Bellator during recent years. His last fight saw him defeat Dovletdzhan Yagshimuradov on scorecards in October 2021. Before then, he had a victory against PFL alum Viktor Nemkov.
Moore is making his return after years outside of the cage. He won his Bellator debut in 2019, beating Lee Chadwick on scorecards.
Bout 7: Brian Moore (14-9) vs. Arivaldo Lima da Silva (19-10) (Bantamweight)
Fighting to snap a current losing streak, Brian Moore will fight Arivaldo Lima da Silva at bantamweight.
Moore will be fighting to avoid falling into a three-fight losing streak for the first time in his career. He is coming off two losses against prospects at bantamweight, suffering defeats to Nikita Mikhailov and Jornel Lugo.
Lima da Silva will be making his Bellator debut in the fight. The near-30 bout vet is coming off a strong run on the Brazilian regional scene that saw him score five consecutive wins, with four coming via stoppage.
Bout 8: Brett Johns (18-3) vs. Jordan Winski (12-3) (Bantamweight)
The prelims will wrap up with a fight between former UFC fighter Brett Johns and Jordan Winski.
Johns picked up his first Bellator win in February, stopping Khurshed Kakhorov late with strikes. Before then, he suffered a defeat in his promotional debut against Danny Sabatello.
This fight will be Winski’s first time competing outside of the United States. Similar to Johns, he has an even Bellator record and is coming off his first win. That victory came in April when he went the distance against Ryan Dela Cruz for a scorecard win.
Main Card (4:00PM EDT / 9:00PM IST) (Showtime)
Bout 9: Ciaran Clarke (5-0) vs. Rafael Hudson (5-3) (Featherweight)
Rising undefeated featherweight prospect Ciaran Clarke will kick off the main card with a fight against Rafael Hudson.
Clarke has slowly built up an impressive five wins since debuting for Bellator in 2019. His last victory came through somewhat of an unsatisfying fashion, as a dislocated shoulder took opponent Abou Tounkara out of their bout. He will look for a better result this weekend.
Hudson is the second opponent that was for Clarke. It was originally planned that Georges Sasu would meet Clarke in the Bellator cage.
Hudson will be fighting for his first win since 2019. His last two fights, which took place in 2021, saw him suffer losses.
Bout 10: Mads Burnell (16-5) vs. Pedro Carvalho (12-6) (Featherweight)
Both aiming to get back into the win column, Mads Burnell and Pedro Carvalho will face off.
Burnell suffered his first loss since 2018 in March, dropping scorecards against Adam Borics. He had a seven-fight winning streak before then, including three Bellator victories.
Carvalho has struggled in more recent years, winning just two of his past five fights. Bellator newcomer Piotr Niedzielski beat Carvalho four months back, winning a split decision at Bellator 280.
Bout 11: Leah McCourt (6-2) vs. Dayana Silva (10-7) (Featherweight)
Ireland’s Leah McCourt will fight to return after her first Bellator loss, facing Dayana Silva on Friday’s main card.
McCourt lost a unanimous decision in February against Sinead Kavanagh. That fight was her first defeat since her 2017 pro debut back in Cage Warriors. She had an extensive five-fight Bellator winning streak, including a submission win from 2021 over Janay Harding.
With a supporting crowd behind her, McCourt will search for a win over Silva.
Silva struggled at the start of her Bellator run, taking two straight losses in 2021. She has since rebounded, beating Harding on scorecards in April.
Bout 12: Yoel Romero (14-6) vs. Melvin Manhoef (32-15-1) (Light Heavyweight)
Veterans Yoel Romero and Melvin Manhoef will collide in Friday’s co-main event.
Romero, a former UFC title challenger, picked up his first Bellator win in May, stopping Alex Polizzi with just a second left in their three-round bout. Before then, his long-awaited promotional debut was a loss to Phil Davis in 2021.
Manhoef will be appearing for the first time in nearly two years. His last fight came against Corey Anderson in late 2020, who stopped him in the second round with strikes. The now-46-year-old fighter had two wins in the promotion before then.
It has been mentioned that Manhoef is considering retiring from MMA after his fight on Friday. It is public knowledge that his current Bellator contract will conclude after his performance this weekend.
Bout 13: Benson Henderson (29-11) vs. Peter Queally (13-6-1) (Lightweight)
Irish lightweight Peter Queally will appear in the final bout of the night, taking on experienced talent Benson Henderson
Queally is appearing for the first time since losing a title fight against Patricky Pitbull in November 2021. That fight, which was a rematch, saw Queally get finished in the second round with strikes. He had two wins in Bellator before then, including his previous fight against Pitbull.
Henderson is appearing in Bellator after inking a new contract with them this year. He ended his last contract on a high note, snapping a three-fight skid with a split decision victory against rising contender Islam Mamedov.
Prior losses came against high-level names at lightweight, like Michael Chandler and Jason Jackson.
Queally has the chance to experience a big moment in front of his home crowd but has to get past one of the legends of the sport to attain that feeling.