This Saturday at It's Showtime Lyon, the always entertaining Mosab Amrani will go to battle with Houcine Bennoui, the brother of It's Showtime 61MAX Champ Karim Bennoui.
What boggles my mind is that somehow this fight is on the undercard. It won't be shown. Both of these men are always in wars and Mosab especially is one of the biggest crowd pleasers in kickboxing. It just goes to show how stacked this card is on Saturday. Mosab Amrani was main eventing It's Showtime on December 18 in a fight of the year candidate and now he finds himself on the undercard. I can see what It's Showtime is doing, making the undercard all fights with full Thai rules but this definitely leaves something to be desired.
Mosab Amrani is one of the rising stars of kickboxing. Possessing one of the most crowd pleasing styles in the sport, he is always going forward throwing non stop strikes trying to break his opponent. Fans began to take note after his fight with Mohammed Khamal on December 18 of last year. In what was a non stop, back and forth war, Khamal edged out Amrani in the extra round in a candidate for fight of the year. Despite the loss, Mosab gained tons of respect from the whole kickboxing community for his unbreakable will that was put on display.
His opponent, Houcine Bennoui is another fighter who loves to only go one direction, forward. Bennoui charges forward, blitzing his opponents with every strike in the book. He tends to get wild while blitzing his opponents and looking for the finish, often leaving himself open to counter. You'd be surprised how different his fighting style is compared to his brother Karim, who takes a much more technical approach to fighting.
Both of these fighters excel when moving forward. The styles of Amrani and Bennoui are just almost guaranteed for another all out war in the ring that Mosab Amrani has become known for. It's likely that whoever spends more time backing up will lose. Expect a lot of strikes being traded right in the pocket as both men take full utilization of every strike allowed in the rule book. Amrani especially loves to trade and let it be known to his opponent that he can take what's given and deliver it back ten times harder.
I think the X factor in this fight will be Amrani's chin. Amrani has never been knocked out and has a chin made of granite. Bennoui has been stopped a few times, including a brutal one punch knockout in October of last year at the hands of Alessandro Campagna. Both fighters go for the kill with every strike thrown and have no problem with taking one to give one.
I think the difference in punch resistance will decide in the fight. Look for Amrani to win the battle of, "I'm gonna force you backwards and there's nothing you can do about it." and delightfully walk through Bennoui's strikes while tagging Bennoui on the chin and hurting him en route to a stoppage in the third round.