Darren Till was unable to claim the UFC welterweight world title at the first attempt as Tyron Woodley defended his crown in Dallas, Texas.
‘The Gorilla’ was felled by a right hand from the champion in the second right and although he survived a subsequent barrage of punches and elbows while on the floor, was ultimately beaten by submission.
Till said afterwards: “Tyron was the better man. Sh*t happens. I’m gutted but I’ve had losses before MMA and it makes you stronger.
“There are no excuses – he was the better man. Make no mistake – I’ll come back stronger and I’ll solidify myself as one of the best ever. The goal doesn’t change.
“It really, really hurts the way I went out. It is what it is. Let Tyron have his night. Well done to him.
“I knew he was powerful and had powerful punches. My strategy was to feel him out in the first and see what he was about. He was using his strength a lot but I thought I’d maybe open up on him in the second or third and maybe knock him out.
“I left my hand down and I’ve seen what he clipped me with. It was a great shot so well done to him. I’m just gutted.”
Woodley added: “He’s a tough kid. He counters extremely well with a straight left so I had to pull back and take my time, then punch with him.”