The middleweights will headline KSW 23, which takes place June 8 at Ergo Arena in Gdansk, Poland. The event, which airs live via online pay-per-view, will also feature a two-round heavyweight co-headliner between former World’s Strongest Man winner Mariusz Pudzianowski and a to-be-named opponent. Additionally, UFC veteran Kendall Grove will take on surging Polish standout Michal Materla for the KSW middleweight title.
The evening’s main card will feature a host of Polish talent, including Aslambek Saidov and Maciej Jewtuszko, who will take on to-be-announced foes at welterweight and lightweight, respectively. Karolina Kowalkiewicz will also square off with Marta Chojnoska in a 121-pound women’s catchweight bout, while Mateusz Zawadzki meets Mateusz Gamrot at lightweight.
Khalidov was initially booked to face Manhoef on Dec. 1 at KSW 21, but Manhoef was forced to withdraw due to injury. Instead, Khalidov faced Grove, submitting the lanky Hawaiian with a second-round Achilles lock. The victory marked the sixth straight win over a UFC veteran for the 32-year-old, who has bested the likes of James Irvin, Matt Lindland and Rodney Wallace during his winning streak.
Manhoef, meanwhile, just competed on April 5, when he dropped a unanimous decision to Brock Larson at One FC 8 in Singapore. The defeat snapped a three-fight winning streak for the knockout artist, who earned wins over Jae Young Kim, Ryo Kawamura and Denis Kang last year.