The name of Danaa Batgerel no longer appears on the UFC roster. The Mongolian appears to have been handed his walking papers after a run of three straight losses.

Bategerel was signed in 2019 and matched with Heili Alateng in Shanghai. He lost that fight but went on to win his next three by first round stoppage.

At this stage Batgerel, who had relocated to the US in order to train at Fight Ready in Arizona, looked like one of the brightest prospects in the bantamweight division. The win over Brandon Davis at UFC Vegas 40 had also earned him a $50,000 USD performance bonus.


Difficult assignments

But Batgerel’s success was sufficient to land him some more difficult assignments. Initially scheduled to take on Montel Jackson he eventually found himself facing TUF finalist Chris Gutierrez at UFC Columbus.

Batgerel was stopped in the second round and afterwards he promised he would learn from the experience. Next up was a bout with Kyung Ho Kang at UFC Singapore, the first time he had been matched with an Asian opponent since making his debut in Shanghai.

It was a close contest but the experienced Kang got the better of it, claiming a decision win. This was one of just two fights in which Batgerel would go the distance during his UFC career and he lost both.

Late finish

He spent some time training at Tiger Muay Thai in the aftermath of this defeat. Most recently Batgerel was matched with Brady Hiestand at UFC Vegas 71. Having lost his last two the Chinese fighter must have realized the significance of this bout.

With about a minute remaining in that fight Batgerel looked on course to win a decision. He had clearly done enough to win the first two rounds on the scorecards and had an unassailable looking lead on the scorecards.

But when Hiestand took him down and started to land punches from top position Bategerel just covered up and made no effort to improve his position or fire back. With 39 seconds remaining the referee decided he had seen enough and called off the contest.

That defeat appears to have cost Batgerel his spot on the roster. At the age of 33 it will be a long way back for the Chinese bantamweight and it will be interesting to see what his next move is.

The regional scene in China was decimated by Covid-19 and gone are the days when Wang Sai decided he could make more money fighting there than he would have done by honouring his UFC contract.

Having made the move to the US he could also start competing on the regional scene there where his status as a UFC veteran would make Batgerel a big draw. But his time competing inside the octagon has come to an end.