Image Credit: Cage Warriors
Undefeated Irish prospect, Paul Hughes, is set to make his return to the cage next month.
Hughes (5-0) is scheduled to fight Scotland’s Aidan Stephen in a featherweight contest at Cage Warriors 116 on Saturday 26 September, as announced by the European promotion on Monday. The event will be the third consecutive night of fights behind closed doors at Manchester’s BEC Arena, as part of Cage Warriors’ ‘THE TRILOGY’ series.
Hughes, who trains out of Fight Academy Ireland in Belfast, earned the label of one of the hottest prospects in Irish MMA with his spectacular pro debut first-round finish over Adam Gustab back in 2017. However, that momentum would be curtailed as repeated injuries forced the Derry native to the sidelines for 2 years following his debut. When Hughes finally returned to action in 2019, he made up for lost time, competing 4 times in the space of year and extending his undefeated streak to 5 wins with as many finishes. The featherweight has yet to see a third round in his pro career and his most recent outing donning the trademark yellow gloves in Cage Warriors resulted in a highlight-reel head kick knockout over 4-1 Youri Panada.
Stephen (7-2) will be the most experienced opponent that Hughes has faced to date. The Scot trains out of SBG Moray and despite registering two losses on his professional record, the Elgin native has consistently shown an impressive array of grappling and submission skills. More recently, Stephen has improved his striking arsenal, which when mixed with his grappling skills adds a new dimension to his game. “The Phenomenal” showed just that at Cage Warriors 113, earning the first TKO victory of his professional tenure with a 1st-round stoppage of then undefeated Jack Collins.