- Associated Press - Saturday, July 18, 2015

GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) - British star Michael Bisping won a split decision over Brazil’s Thales Leites on Saturday night in the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s first card in Scotland.

Leites controlled the center of the cage for much of the bout, with Bisping circling to jab at every opportunity. Each man punished the other with leg kicks, and Bisping sustained a toe injury at the end of the first round, limiting his mobility. Bisping and Leites both charged in often in the following rounds, hitting flurries of punches in which Bisping landed more, ultimately gaining him the decision.

“Glasgow is a beautiful city,” Bisping proclaimed. “Thales Leites is a warrior.”

The Englishman then went on to challenge some of the middleweight division’s heavy-hitters, including Yoel Romero and Jacare Souza.

Also, Xtreme Couture fighter Evan Dunham beat fellow American Ross Pearson by unanimous decision.

Ireland’s Joe Duffy, the last man to beat UFC interim featherweight champion Conor McGregor, looked as composed as his more famous compatriot in defeating Brazil’s Ivan Jorge. Duffy was clinical, needing just one opportunity on the ground to get a submission from a triangle choke.

In a women’s bout, Scotland’s Joanne Calderwood beat American Cortney Casey by unanimous decision.

The local straw-weight competitor was staggered by several right crosses in the first round, but was able to get better shots off in the second, backing her opponent against the cage and landing on top as the bout dropped to the canvas. In a weary third round, she went to the midsection, winning the duels that gave her victory on all three scorecards.

“This has been a really tough fight camp for me so it’s great to get the win,” Calderwood noted. “I’ve always been a slow starter. I was just enjoying it so much out there. As long as I put on a good performance for the fans, that’s all I want.”

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