Mirko Cro Cop wins K-1 World Grand Prix

Mirko ‘Cro Cop’ Filipovic thrilled his local fans by winning the K-1 World Grand Prix tournament in Zabreb, Croatia after defeating Suriname's Ismael Londt in the final.

 

Mirko Cro Cop wins K-1 World Grand Prix

The UFC, Pride, and K-1 legend claimed the crown in a vintage performance against Londt after defeating both Jarrell Miller and Pavel Zhuravlev via decision before the final.

The final saw the Croatian veteran display an intensity that many thought had long deserted the 38-year-old as he attacked his much younger opponent with long punching combinations and dirty boxing in the clinch. In the second round, Cro Cop wooed the local crowd when he managed to connect with his legendary left head kick after Londt dropped his hands following a feint.

Despite the significance of his unlikely return to the top of K-1, the event will be remembered by many for the judging controversy that marred Cro Cop's quarter final bout against American Jarrell Miller.  

Miller seemed in control for most of their fight using his superior strength to dominate exchanges the in the clinch and landing a number of heavy knees to the body. Despite this, it would be the local favourite who walked away after the final bell with a controversial unanimous decision.

Arguably the biggest name in the tournament Badr Hari also made a return to the ring after losing over 20 kilos during his stint in prison last year.

Hari defeated Zabit Samedov in the quarterfinals via decision but it was later revealed that Hari had broke his foot in the fight, prompting a premature end of his tournament.

The win at the 2013 K-1 World Grand Prix is Cro Cop's biggest result in K-1 to date with his previous best result a runners-up finish to Ernesto Hoost in 1999.  

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