Tariq Ismail has shown his strength as a striker, earning Amateur Canadian National titles in both boxing and Muay Thai, as well as claiming a Muay Thai championship in 2014. Ismail, who first fought in pro MMA in 2013, has won seven of his eight fights in the sport since. Ismail was last in action in June, scoring a second-round TKO of Walel Watson.


Jalal Al Daaja entered the combat sports world through Taekwondo at a young age before going on to boxing, where he won a national championship in his home country of Jordan. A Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt in addition to his striking speciality, Daaja has scored finishes in seven of his 11 victories in the cage thus far. “The Tornado” last fought in January, losing to Mehdi Saadi.


These two fought once before in 2019, with Ismail scoring a unanimous decision win. Will history repeat itself here in the PFL MENA bantamweight regular season?


Note: Ismail enters this fight with a one-point deduction due to missing weight.



Round 1


Ismail pressing forward. Round kick by Al Daaja. Left hook by Ismail. Right hand and a rough kick by Al Daaja. Ismail comes in, and Al Daaja looks for a guillotine choke. Ismail escapes and presses Al Daaja into the fence. Ismail fires off a couple of knees with Al Daaja in that position. Ismail and Al Daaja continue to jockey for position, with Ismail keeping a hold of him. Knee to the body by Ismail. Al Daaja reverses the position and the clinch breaks. Left hand from Al Daaja. Low kick by Ismail. Front kick by Al Daaja. Ismail lands a couple of left hands. Ismail presses Al Daaja into the fence.


Round kick by Al Daaja. Al Daaja lands a quick inside uppercut as he’s pressed into the SmartCage again by Ismail. The two battle in the clinch. Ismail lands a knee before the break. Al Daaja misses a high kick. Right hand misses for Al Daaja. High kick misses for Al Daaja again. One-two lands for Ismail. One-two misses for Al Daaja. Ismail presses Al Daaja into the fence again, where the round ends.



Round 2


Left hand from Al Daaja. Low kick offered by Ismail, but Al Daaja pushes him down. Ismail gets up and the two get into a clinch again, with Ismail again getting Al Daaja against the fence. Al Daaja goes for a trip, but Ismail gets around it. Spinning backfist by Al Daaja misses. One-two by Ismail. Al Daaja goes for Ismail’s legs, but he cannot get the takedown. High kick from Al Daaja is blocked. Left hand by Ismail. Al Daaja goes in for another takedown but gets stuffed. Ismail goes in for a takedown, Al Daaja looks for a choke, and Ismail picks Al Daaja up, bringing him across the SmartCage and slamming him down!



Ismail gets around Al Daaja’s guard to get back to his feet. He looks for a guillotine but cannot get it. Al Daaja misses a huge spinning backkick. Ismail dodges another Al Daaja takedown attempt and lands a strong combination before pressing Al Daaja against the fence once more. With about a minute left the fight returns standing. Al Daaja lands a strong leg kick. Left hand misses for Ismail. Left hand by Ismail. Al Daaja shoots in, and his takedown attempt gets reversed.



Round 3


Low kick from Al Daaja. Combination from Al Daaja does not land. Al Daaja misses an overhand right. Right hand by Ismail. Ismail gets around Al Daaja and nearly gets his back standing. A clinch battle ensues, and it’s Ismail who gets Al Daaja against the SmartCage yet again. Knee to the body by Ismail. The referee quickly warns for activity, and Al Daaja gets out of his grasp. Al Daaja misses a low kick. Al Daaja misses another overhand. Round kick by Al Daaja. Another clinch with a knee from Ismail, and Al Daaja ends up in a familiar position.


With about two minutes left, Al Daaja tries to press forward. Low kick from Al Daaja. Another low kick from Al Daaja, and Ismail throws a right hand. Left hand from Al Daaja, followed by a front kick. Low kick from Al Daaja. Right hand by Al Daaja. After a brief pause for an eye poke, Al Daaja continues to push forward, throwing a mix of low kicks and single punches. Low kick by Al Daaja. Al Daaja has the activity, but nothing major lands for him before the bell.





Tariq Ismail and Jalal Al Daaja ends in a majority draw (29-27, 28-28, 28-28). Ismail missed weight, so Al Daaja wins the tiebreaker per PFL MENA rules and advances to the PFL MENA Playoffs in the Bantamweight Division