Michael Bisping defeats Dan Henderson at UFC 204 in Manchester
The 37-year-old British fighter has now won his last five bouts, continuing his recent momentum with a victory in his first title defense.
Bisping won the middleweight belt back in June by defeating Luke Rockhold in their UFC 199 clash with a first-round knockout.
The Brit knew Henderson pretty well, as the American had knocked him out in their previous meeting back in July of 2009 at UFC 100.
The result could have turned out differently, as a hammer right hand from Henderson sent Bisping to the canvas in the first round, but the champion held on, despite bleeding heavily.
Bisping came back into the fight in the remaining rounds, but both fighters gave their absolute all, with Henderson taking his opponent down close to the end and looking to finish it.
After five frenetic five-minute rounds, the Brit retained his title by unanimous decision – 48-47, 48-47, 49-46 – much to the delight of the home crowd.
There was mutual respect between the fighters at the end, with both commending the other’s attitude.
The other significant result in the main card saw Gegard Mousasi defeat Vitor Belfort by TKO, with a barrage of punches ending the clash in the second round of their middleweight bout.
The Iran-born fighter caught his opponent with a devastating right head kick in the second round before taking Belfort to the mat and landing a host of haymakers that forced the referee to intervene.
In the light heavyweight bout, Jimi Manuwa knocked out Ovince Saint Preux, with the Californian delivering a sickening left hook to end the fight in the second round.
Heavyweight Stefan Struve used a D’Arce choke to defeat Daniel Omielanczuk, while a rear-naked choke gave featherweight Mirsad Bektic victory over Russell Doane.