2020 Olympic medalist Bekzod Abdurakhmonov to fight for Combat FC, sets sights on UFC

An Olympic medalist has his sights set back on MMA – and the UFC.

Uzbekistan’s Bekzod Abdurakhmonov, a bronze medalist in the 2020 Olympic games in 74kg freestyle wrestling, will compete June 16 against Derik de Freitas in a welterweight bout, which takes place at Combat FC 4 in Wilmington, Mass., promotion officials Friday informed MMA Junkie. The card will stream on UFC Fight Pass.

Abdurakhmonov (7-0) competed in MMA from 2012-2017 with seven professional victories and two amateur wins during that stretch. Despite his wrestling base, Abdurakhmonov only went to the judges’ scorecards once as a pro, with three knockouts and three submissions on his resume to date.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – AUGUST 19: Bekzod Abdurakhmonov of Uzbekistan defeats Jordan Ernest Burroughs of the United States during the Men’s 74kg Repechage Wrestling match on Day 14 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Carioca Arena 2 on August 19, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

His MMA stint came while he medaled on the international stage in the World Championships, Asian Games, and Asian Championships – the latter two where he won a gold medal in 2014.

In 2020, Abdurakhmonov co-medaled with American Kyle Dake after victories over Franklin Gomez, Augusto Midana, and Daniyar Kaisanov.

In addition to his 2020 medal-earning Olympic run, Abdurakhmonov competed in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro when he tech-falled tournament favorite Jordan Burroughs. To this day, Abdurakhmonov is the only man to do so. Abdurakhmonov went on to compete in the bronze medal game, but came up short.

On fight night, Abdurakhmonov will take on the gritty Brazilian fighter de Freitas (2-5), who will look to shock the world. De Freitas has competed solely on the Brazilian regional scene and the June 16 bout will mark his United States debut.

With the addition, the full Combat FC 4 lineup includes:

  • Kemran Lachinov vs. Jonathan Piermsa – for welterweight title

  • Kris Moutinho vs. TBA

  • Randy Costa vs. Carlos Espinosa

  • Saul Almeida vs. Nate Ghareeb

  • Bekzod Abdurakhmonov vs. Derik de Freitas

  • Abbas Abasov vs. Travis Demko

  • Leonardo Ladeira vs. Robert Wusstig

  • Sage Philippe vs. Aaron Trecell

  • Paul Teague vs. Jon Viruet

  • Yann Oliveira vs. Stephen Stengel

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie