Andrey Koreshkov knocked out by Douglas Lima at Bellator 164
Lima delivered a sickening knockout punch after 1.21 of the third in Tel Aviv, Israel, to condemn Koreshkov to only the second defeat of his six-year MMA career.
The 26-year-old from Omsk had initially become Bellator Welterweight Champion by defeating Lima back in July 2015, winning the clash in Connecticut by unanimous decision.
Koreshkov defeated Benson Henderson, again by unanimous decision, in his first defense of the title at the same venue in April at Bellator 153.
The rematch between Koreshkov and Lima had been eagerly anticipated following the explosive first match-up between the pair – and this time it was the Brazilian who claimed the spoils with a hammer left hook.
Bellator champ Koreshkov not bothered by Lima's injury claims, but says all fighters deal with them https://t.co/MW1MOX1nIU— MMAjunkie (@MMAjunkie) November 10, 2016
Lima has had injury worries and took a year out of action to rehabilitate from a knee injury after initially losing to Koreshkov.
However, he returned to Bellator action in July, defeating Paul Daley in London at Bellator 158 by unanimous decision.
Koreshkov will now have to focus on regrouping , with the defeat leaving Alexander Shlemenko’s protege with an MMA record of 19-2.