Ahead of the UFC’s highly anticipated return to UK shores on July 27, Cage Warriors announced they would also have a show in Manchester two days prior, which will no doubt serve as the perfect appetizer to fight fans in the city ahead of the big night on Saturday night.

Over the past few days, Cage Warriors have announced a duo of intriguing contests added to the card, both of which will see rising talents compete.

Unbeaten prospects Damon Donald and Mateo Martignoni will eventually meet, as their Featherweight contest is rebooked after Martignoni was forced to withdraw from their Cage Warriors 171 bout.

For Donald, by the time the bout rolls around he will have been away from competition for 10 months, but not through lack of trying. The Scotsman was set to fight back in October 2023 and April of this year but both fights were pulled. After a 15 fight amateur run, Donald joined the professional ranks last year and submitted Imran Chelhani in the second round of his professional debut.

For Martignoni, the Italian is still somewhat learning on the job. After just three amateur fights over the space of four years, the brother of former Cage Warriors champion Michele Martignoni decided to step into the professional ranks. He has so far picked up two stoppages in his two outings and will be looking to continue his impressive finishing streak at Cage Warriors 175.

In a Bantamweight contest, Jack Axworthy will make his promotional debut when he takes on Kevin Cesari.

Next Generation have produced numerous big stars, with many opting to take the Cage Warriors route before eventually moving on to the UFC. Leading the charge at minute is undoubtedly Paddy ‘The Baddy’ Pimblett and Molly McCann. 14 of Pimblett’s 19 fights before signing with the UFC took place inside the Cage Warriors cage, amassing a promotional record of 11-3 and collecting the Featherweight title in the process. Much like Pimblett, McCann also claimed Cage Warriors gold during her three fights in the yellow gloves, picking up the vacant Flyweight strap before signing with the UFC.

Axworthy joins numerous teammates, such as Luke Riley, Adam Cullen, Chris Price and Bantamweight champion Liam Gittins, all of whom are currently flying the Next Generation flag in the promotion.

The 1-0 prospect joins the Cage Warriors ranks with a flawless amateur and professional record. He made the walk for the first time as an amateur in 2021and has managed to compete three times every year since. In his professional debut, Axworthy landed a highlight reel spinning heel kick knock out to get his career off to a flying start.

Standing opposite him on July 25 will be Frenchman, Kevin Cesari. After picking up a first round submission win in his professional debut, Cesari is yet to have his hand raised since and finds himself on a four fight skid with losses to Jack Claffey, Leon Armes, Amine Zerhouni and Tommy Brunning.