Is there a wrestling problem for Irish fighters in the UFC?

MMA journalist Mark O'Toole speaks to the Rewind's Oisin Langan in the wake of Joe Duffy's defeat

Is there a wrestling problem for Irish fighters in the UFC?

©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

On Saturday night, Donegal's Joseph Duffy came out on the wrong side of his bout with American Dustin Poirier at UFC 195.

But does the defeat point to underlying issues for Irish fighters, namely in the art of wrestling?

MMA journalist Mark O'Toole that may be the case as he explained when he joined Oisin Langan for the Rewind podcast.

"You did ask what did Joe Duffy do wrong and I think what we've seen is an ongoing trend in Irish fighters not being as well equipped at wrestling as their American counterparts," he said.

"Mixed-martial arts comprises of many different components and styles of fighting and it's how you marry them all together and how you put a strategy in place to beat your opponent. One thing we've seen with Irish athletes more often than not competing in the UFC or even on the local circuits in BAMMA and Cage Warriors is that their wrestling isn't quite where it needs to be or even their defence against the wrestling take-down isn't quite where it needs to be.

"Despite Joe Duffy clearly being perhaps the better striker and the more crisp striker than Dustin Poirier, his wrestling, he was taken down at will by Dustin Poirier and that's really where he lost the fight." 

Listen to Mark's full analysis of the fight on the podcast: