PFL MENA Upcoming Semi Final Predictions

PFL MENA proved to be an incredibly successful inaugural event. Let’s look forward to who is progressing to the semi-finals of the Bantamweight and Featherweight Playoffs; we also give our predictions below too.

Jalal Al Daaja vs Ali Taleb (Bantamweight Semi Finals)

With many believing that Tariq Ismael should have gotten the nod last night against Al Daaja: the 36 year old Jordanian fighter is possibly out of his element against an elite, Swedish fighter in Ali Taleb, who is also a PFL veteran at only 28 years of age. Al Daaja looked to be struggling with the pace and striking of his opponent but showed tenacity and grit to try and impose his own grappling style of fighting, earning him a majority draw decision and allowing him to progress to the semi-finals due to his opponents’ weight miss on the scales. (PFL docks points for missing weight).

Against such a highly skilled and well rounded opponent like Taleb; Al Daaja might be facing an uphill battle in the semi finals. Taleb displayed crisp boxing, distance management, good cardio output and high level grappling in his dominant performance against Nawras Abzakh last night. (Prediction  – Ali Taleb by Round 2 KO). 

Rachid Hazoume Vs Elias Boudegzdame (Bantamweight Semi Finals)

Both men would get the submission win last night which would lead them on to a future collision course. But it wasn’t without any adversity. Hazoume would probably be involved in one of the best fights of the evening, ensuing in a back-and-forth, spirited affair against Tristar fighter; Xavier Alaoui. The 32 year old Canadian would dive on a guillotine choke against Rachid which was very close to finishing the fight and ended in mount. Hazoume would then get the butterfly sweep mount, reverse fortunes for both men and then sink in a deep rear naked choke.

Boudegzdame, would also struggle in his bout too against veteran fighter Hassan Mondour. Mondour would impose a  grappling-heavy , pressurising style but Boudegzdame would rally, getting the guillotine choke in Round 2, demonstrating his unrelenting tenacity in Riyadh. Based off their fights last night, Rachid looked the more composed and ultimately gets bonus points for finishing a high level opponent In Alaoui too. (Prediction –  Unanimous Decision win for Rachid Haz)

Maroune Bellagouit vs Islam Reda (Featherweight Semi finals)

This is very much a classic striker vs grappler bout. Maroune looked like a world beater in his bout against Mido Mohammed. He dominated in the striking department; switching stances, maintaining safe distance control, and when he sensed he had hurt his opponent; he patiently picked the Egyptian fighter and closed the show late in round 3. 

Reda, on the other hand, had a completely opposite style. The 30 year old Egyptian would attempt multiple takedowns to initiate his grappling attack and landing powerful takedowns as well. He looked out of his element in the striking department  against the 27 year old Parisian fighter too, nonetheless, get the rear naked choke finish. Usually, I would lean towards a grappler in a grappler vs striker battle, so I believe Reda is the favourite going into one. (Prediction – Islam Reda via Submission Round 3)

Abdullah Al-Qahtani vs Abdalrahman Alhyasat (Featherweight Semi finals)

The main event star; Abdullah Al- Qahtani looked dominant at PFL MENA. He would demonstrate solid striking, clinch work, forward pressure and aggression to give his Egyptian opponent his first loss. The Saudi Arabian looked every bit of a well-rounded martial artist as he possibly could do last night.

Abdelrahman Alhyasat looked composed in his unanimous decision victory against Ahmed Tarek. He would land low kicks, landing combinations and winning dominant positions throughout the bout. He would outwork Tarek and win by Unanimous decision. The UAE Warriors veteran has proven his composure, skill level and timing is levels above a lot of MENA fighters. (Prediction Abdelrahman defeats Al-Qahtani by Unanimous Decision)

That wraps up our predictions for the semi finals of PFL Mena. Who do you have as your outright winner? Keep staying tuned with Arabs MMA to find out who will be the Champion of the PFL Mena Tournament. 

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