After a long period of negotiations and opponent courting, MMAWeekly can confirm through sources close to negotiations that Paul Daley has agreed to fight Yuya Shirai as the headline bout for the upcoming BAMMA 5 card, to be held at the MEN Arena in Manchester, England on February 26 2011.
Fighter’s Only initially reported the bout between Daley and Shirai.
Speculation has run rife over the last week as to who Daley’s intended opponent could be with the incumbent Welterweight DEEP champion Yuya Shirai and former UFC veteran Karo Parysian being in the frame.
Paul Daley is a contracted Strikeforce fighter and in pole position to face the winner of the upcoming encounter between Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos and Nick Diaz – the current Strikeforce 170lbs kingpin. Independent sources have indicated that Daley had to pursue opponent endorsement before being given the all clear to make his BAMMA debut and open his 2011 campaign of terror.
Although on the surface the bout will be an exciting affair, there are underlying risks for the British bomber. Scott Coker first broke the news on MMAWeekly Radio about Daley getting a shot against the winner of the Nick Diaz and Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos, but now there is more risk because if he loses all bets are off.
“The deck gets reshuffled,” Coker said about Daley’s title shot if he loses in BAMMA.
The true winners in this bout are the English fans who will no doubt welcome back the controversial fighter with a raucous applause, celebrating a return to competition on home shores following a two year international absence.