London, England – The CWFC lightweight world title will be at stake when Curt Warburton (13-4) and Stevie Ray (14-5) clash at Cage Warriors 69 at The Forum in London, England, on Saturday, June 7, 2014.
CWFC officials can confirm that previous champion Ivan Buchinger has been released from his contract with the promotion, leaving a vacancy at the summit of the 155lbs division.
The bout will mark the second time that Warburton and Ray will have met, with their previous encounter – which took place in March, 2013 – ending in a unanimous-decision triumph for Warburton.
“I can’t wait to be stepping back into that cage, with the opportunity of walking back out as the new Cage Warriors champion,” said Warburton, a native of Newcastle, England.
Warburton signed to compete exclusively for Cage Warriors Fighting Championship last year and made a successful debut for the promotion at CWFC 62 courtesy of a first-round submission of Wesley Murch.
The 33-year-old has put together a 6-1 record since his departure from the UFC following a defeat to Joe Lauzon in June 2011.
Ray, on the other hand, will be looking to regain the belt he relinquished to Ivan Buchinger after their epic encounter in the main event at CWFC 63 in Dublin last New Year’s Eve.
The 23-year-old Scotsman had been crowned champion back in October after emerging victorious from the four-man CWFC lightweight title tournament thanks to wins over Jason Ball and Sean Carter at CWFC 60.
Ray said: “I’m looking forward to getting back in the win column, avenging my loss to Curt and getting my title back in London where I won it last October.”
Meanwhile, Ivan Buchinger and Cage Warriors Fighting Championship have parted company as a result of the fighter’s refusal to honour the terms of his contract, as explained by Cage Warriors Fighting Championship CEO Graham Boylan.
“Despite having competed for us on six occasions, Ivan claimed that he didn’t understand his contract and decided that he no longer wanted to fight for us under the terms that he had agreed. But it’s company policy not to be held to ransom by any fighter, so we were happy to let him go,” said Boylan.
“We have an incredibly stacked lightweight division, as evidenced by the meeting of Curt Warburton and Stevie Ray for the belt on June 7, so losing one fighter from that division is merely a drop in the ocean. Nevertheless, I thank Ivan for his contribution and wish him the best for his future.”
Tickets for CWFC 69, featuring Curt Warburton versus Stevie Ray for the CWFC lightweight world title, will go on sale shortly.