In a back-and-forth battle to open the UFC Wichita main card, Omari Akhmedov got the better of Tim Boetsch, bloodying the veteran on route to a unanimous decision win.
Tim Boetsch was back in action at UFC Wichita, where ‘The Barbarian’ was looking to bounce back from a loss against Antonio Carlos Junior last April. After a long layoff, Boetsch, a longtime member of the UFC roster, was taking on Omari Akhmedov, who fought to a draw in his return to middleweight against Marvin Vettori at UFC 219. That was over a year ago, but injury had kept Akhmedov out of the octagon since.
Prior to the fight, there was talk of it being the last walk to the cage of Tim Boetsch. If it was to be his final fight, could he go out on a win?
It was Akhmedov landing the first significant strike of the bout, connecting with a head kick that came with little to no warning. They’d tie up after that, Boetsch with his back to the fence, defending with knees. Omari looked to land a trip, but for a big man, Boetsch showed some surprisingly solid balance.
Back in the middle, the pace would slow as the pair were feeling each other out. Omari Akhmedov would launch a couple of big swings, but hit only air.
Round two saw Boetsch mix in a front kick following an early exchange. Akhmedov attacked the lower leg in response. A right hand landed flush on Boetsch’s nose, bloodying it. The damage, however, did not appear to bother Boetsch all that much. Akhmedov, however, countered a front kick, coming over the top, and Boetsch soon found himself being backed up.
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Not for long, but any forward progress was hampered by a calf kick by Akhmedov. Boetsch was finally starting to show a bit of annoyance with his wounded nose as well.
In the third, the pair picked up the pace, Boetsch firing off front kicks and letting his hands fly, Akhmedov answering back with two-punch combinations that opened a cut up by the side of Boetsch’s right eye. The pair would continue trading through the third, Boetsch often pressing the action but Akhmedov landing more.
On the scorecards, it wasn’t close. As for any possible retirement for Boetsch, nothing official following the fight.
Omari Akhmedov def. Tim Boetsch by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)