- TUF Live
Faber gets Barao as England's Ogle is beaten in TUF Live
Urijah Faber will fight Renan Barao for the interim bantamweight title at UFC 148, it was announced on a night that saw England's Andy Ogle exit the TUF 15 competition.
Faber had been coaching against reigning 135lb champion Dominick Cruz on season 15 of The Ultimate Fighter, but a blown ACL for Cruz left Faber without a rival. Stepping in is Brazilian Barao, who has not lost in his last 29 fights.
The duo will form one of the most talent-loaded bouts in UFC history, with Faber a former WEC champion who holds a win and a loss against Cruz. Opponent Barao already has the scalp of Brad Pickett on his record, and he outclassed the tough Scott Jorgensen in his last outing.
Friday's fights started with Vinc Pichel taking a tight majority decision against Chris Saunders for Team Cruz, after a two-round war of attrition. The pair spent most of the opening stanza locked in a clinch, with neither man really doing enough to heavily influence the judges.
Round two saw Pichel, as he did in his previous fight, become the aggressor, landing a series of heavy shots on Saunders and backing him into the cage. The judges rendered a 20-18 20-18 19-19 decision in Pichel's favour, much to the dismay of Saunders who felt he had done enough to force a sudden death round.
In the last of the quarter-finals, Andy Ogle simply could not match the skill level of Al Iaquinta, as two of Team Faber's men squared off. Ogle stayed competitive but consistently got caught by heavy punches from his rival, who dropped him twice - the latter with a meaty left hook - as the referee came to Ogle's rescue at 4.44 of the first round.
TUF 15 semi-finals:
James Vick v Michael Chiesa
Vinc Pichel v Al Iaquinta