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Mamed Khalidov challenges light heavyweight champ Tomasz Narkun at KSW 42

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Rumors circulated last August suggesting that Mamed Khalidov was on the verge of signing for the UFC, but the Grozny-born Polish middleweight has booked his next fight with KSW where he is set to take on yet another promotional champion, Tomasz Narkun, March 3 in Lodz.

KSW revealed the news through its social media networks on Monday. The bout will be contested at a catchweight and will headline the much-anticipated KSW 42 card.

Last year, MMAUno.com reported that a UFC debut against Lyoto Machida had been in the works for UFC Gdansk before Khalidov denied that he had been offered the fight through his official Facebook account.

A legend on the Polish MMA scene, Khalidov will now take on light-heavyweight champion Tomasz Narkun following his victory over then welterweight champion Borys Mankowski at the record-breaking KSW 39: Colosseum. KSW broke UFC’s European attendance record with the Colosseum event that saw almost 58,000 fans packed into the Polish national stadium last May.

The 37-year-old Khalidov’s current 14-fight win streak dates back to 2010 and boasts notable wins over Luke Barnatt, Melvin Manhoef, Kendall Grove, Jesse Taylor, and Matt Lindland. He is 20-0 under the KSW banner. He currently holds the KSW middleweight title, but he also claimed the inaugural KSW light heavyweight championship back in 2009, which he later vacated.

Current light heavyweight champion Narkun could represent one of Khalidov’s toughest tests to date. The champion is nine years Khalidov’s junior and has claimed stoppage victories in all 14 of his career wins.

Narkun scored a first-round win over Goran Reljic to win the light heavyweight strap back in 2015. He has since defended the strap on three occasions against Cassio Barbosa de Oliveira, Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou and Marcin Wójcik – who all suffered first round defeats to the champion.

Quoted in KSW’s press release, Narkun claimed that he is honored to take on an “MMA legend” of Khalidov’s ilk.

“I am a true mixed martial artist and I love sporting challenges, so when I was offered this bout I took it instantly,” said Narkun.

“Mamed is an MMA legend in this part of the world and facing him is both an honor and a demanding challenge. But I think my skill set stack up really well against him and I’ll do everything in my power to win this bout on March 3rd.”

KSW 42 is set to boast some of the promotion’s biggest stars with Michael Materla, Karol Bedorf , Lukasz Jurkowski, lightweight champ Mateusz Gamrot, and flyweight champ Ariane Lipski all set for action.