It was a night of furious finishes, fantastic fights and future stars at Cage Warriors Academy South East 31 in Colchester.

Hometown favourite Charlie Falco topped the bill at the Charter Hall, and successfully defended his professional strawweight title for the second time, dispatching experienced challenger Benjamin Harrison with a flurry of punches on the floor in the first round.

It was Falco's first stoppage win in the paid ranks, improving his record to 4-2 as a pro, and stretching his winning run to three fights. The BKK Fighters talent has found a home at 115lbs, and seems to be growing in confidence with every scrap.

East Anglian Daily Times: Tariq Pell moved to 2-0 as a proTariq Pell moved to 2-0 as a pro (Image: Brett King)

In the co-main event, top Norfolk prospect Tariq Pell extended his pro record to 2-0 with a DQ win over Italian foe Marco Bellantuono.

Pell dominated the catchweight fight, made at 159lbs, taking Bellantuono down at will and coming close to ground and pound finishes on at least a couple of occasions, bouncing huge elbows off the blood-soaked head of his opponent.

But, while Bellantuono showed plenty of heart, he repeatedly broke the rules, raking Pell's eyes and hitting the back of his head.

Referee Dan Movahedi, after docking the Italian two points and issuing several stern warnings, finally decided he'd seen enough in the third round, disqualifying the apparently unremorseful fighter.

It was not the way Pell would have liked to win, but victory was inevitable and he'll move on with another good learning experience under his belt.

Elsewhere on the card, seven amateur titles were decided.

East Anglian Daily Times: Mo Zubair won the flyweight titleMo Zubair won the flyweight title (Image: Brett King)

Team Renegade's Mo Zubair dropped to his knees after winning the flyweight crown with a tight rear naked choke finish of the game Alaa Cheaaibi in the second round.

The delighted Zubair, a walking embodiment of the 'anyone, anywhere, anytime' moniker, improved his record to 5-9 and was immediately confronted in the cage by his next challenger, popular Essex-based Australian Christian Young. That one should be a corker in October.

In the leading contender for fight of the night, Rhi Rhi Hudson became a champ champ, adding the strawweight strap to her atomweight title by beating gutsy Italian Federica Di-Filippo in a wild back-and-forth dispute.

East Anglian Daily Times: Rhi Rhi Hudson, right, and Federica Di-Filippo brought the crowd to their feetRhi Rhi Hudson, right, and Federica Di-Filippo brought the crowd to their feet (Image: Brett King)

Hudson improved to 3-0 with a unanimous points win, but had to eat several big shots from Di-Filippo (now 2-4), who showed huge improvements and a thrilling willingness to stand and bang, absorbing some heavy left hooks in the process. 

While Hudson had her hand raised, both ladies were given a standing ovation by appreciative fans and emerge with reputations enhanced.

A potential star of the future shone brightly in the welterweight title clash, Kadre Dene scoring a massive knockout of home favourite Ethan Barry in the first round with a right hand which put Barry out on his feet.

Cage Warriors Academy Lowlands product Dene, now 3-0, then landed a left hook which crumpled Barry as the referee jumped in to halt hostilities. He looks to be a real talent - tall, long, athletic and packing serious power. 

East Anglian Daily Times: Kadre Dene, left, on his way to stopping Ethan Barry Kadre Dene, left, on his way to stopping Ethan Barry (Image: Brett King)

Charlie Hatton scored a stoppage win to lift the lightweight crown, battling back from a tough first round to hand Ehson Khudoyorbekov his first defeat via a barrage of knees to the midsection in the second stanza. Hatton, now 6-3, will perhaps seek a rematch with local star Dom Rogers, who bested him last December.

Tommy 'Big Tings' Brunning defended his bantamweight title with another points win over Harry Myers, the same man he beat in the same way last December, while Sineadh Ni-Nullain took a points win against Cherisse Davis in their flyweight title dispute.

And, in the first title fight on the card, featherweight Callum Haughian put Japanese foe Daisuke Murayama to sleep with a ninja choke in the opening round, improving his record to 7-4 and dropping Murayama to 8-4.

That capped a perfect night for powerhouse gym GB Top Team, who went 7-0 on the evening - other wins came from flyweight Delffy Humer (first round arm triangle), featherweight Billy Broster (second round TKO), lightweight Luan Breda (first round armbar), featherweight Connor Patterson (UD), bantamweight Zach Maunder (UD) and 140lb catchweight Jacob Gifford (first round TKO).

East Anglian Daily Times: Rhi Rhi Hudson is now a two-weight champRhi Rhi Hudson is now a two-weight champ (Image: Brett King)

It was a good night for local teams too - Tsunami Norfolk, the home of Pell and much-respected head coach Lee Doski, also went unbeaten, with welterweight Igor Alves (first round RNC), bantamweight Tayler Mills (first round RNC) and welterweight Marcin Kochel (UD) making it a quartet of victories.

Meanwhile, the Combat Institute, the Colchester gym run by former Cage Warriors world middleweight champ James Webb, scored two victories.

Featherweight Will Matier's one arm, second round RNC finish of Esin Huseinov was superb, while fellow 145lber Sam Comiskey outlasted Joe Turner to take a points win.

Finally, Avaddon Fight Team, based in Wisbech, also grabbed a double via welterweight Josh Kirby's first round stoppage of Matteo Abbate and featherweight Alex Andrews' points triumph against Jack Ashman.

On an evening where just ten of the 27 fights went the distance, there were plenty of contenders for KO of the night.

Dene's effort was right up there, as was Gifford's nasty ground and pound finish.

East Anglian Daily Times: Mo Zubair locks in the fight-ending choke Mo Zubair locks in the fight-ending choke (Image: Brett King)

Team Underground's Kenny Le should be in the mix too, his first round left hook stoppage of Richard Lloyd Jones ending what was a crazy couple of minutes, with both men swinging for the fences in a fight of the night contender.

BKK product Ben Edwards also scored a highlight reel stoppage on his debut, folding Wilf Kelly with a head kick turned knee which brought fans to their feet in the first round of their welterweight fight.

Cage Warriors Academy South East returns to the Charter Hall on October 7.