Darren Till was denied his hopes of seizing the UFC welterweight title from Tyron Woodley after he tapped out in the second round of their clash in Dallas.
Woodley defended his crown and added to his record of 18 victories, three defeats and one draw, with a submission win over his Liverpudlian opponent after a brutal takedown early in the round.
A heavy right sent Till crashing to the canvas and the American, 36, unleashed a barrage of blows on his 25-year-old challenger.
The submission was called at 4.19, the Englishman unable to free himself and continue the fight.
Woodley earned the strap despite having not stepped foot in the octagon since July 2017.
Till, who was hoping to become only the United Kingdom’s second UFC champion, admitted the defeat “really really hurts” but insisted he would fight on to be the “best ever”.
“I’m just gutted, but you know I’ve had losses before MMA and it just makes you stronger,” he told ufc.com.
“There’s no excuses, Tyron was the better man tonight and, make no mistake, I will come back stronger.”
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