Inside Russia's brutal and bloody bareknuckle boxing world as fighters battle it out for just £10,000

RUSSIA'S brutal and bloody bareknuckle boxing is high risk, low reward.

The brave, or totally bonkers, fighters battle it out as they put their bodies on the line to be crowned champion.

And all that for the paltry prize of just £10,000.

The Hardcore Fighting Championships is currently underway in Russia's first professional bareknuckle fighting league.

And with the round-of-16 stage taking place on Monday, it was a graphic affair inside the ring.

Fighters only have thin wraps around their wrists with no protection meaning hands and faces are often spattered with blood by the end of a bout.

To make matters even more bizarre, the cage is located on board a Rio-1 vessel ship currently in Moscow.

Small crowds were in attendance on Monday as the 16 remaining fighters battled it out for a spot in the quarter-finals – and ultimately for the one-million-roubles prize.

The event attracts plenty of professional fighters to compete with millions watching on at home.

That includes Zelemkhan "Machine Gunner" Dukaev, Yevgeny "Sailor" Kurdanov and Firuz "Sympathetic" Yusupov.

Courier of the Delivery Club food delivery service Andrei Kiselev was also involved in the bloody sport.

Kiselev went up against his delivery rival as he took on courier of Yandex.Eda Anton Shchipochev.

Bareknuckle boxing is also popular in the UK with various properly-run events – and organisers claimed to SunSport it is actually safer than regular boxing.

Meanwhile, Shaun Smith runs Smithy's Gym in Warrington alongside wife Amanda and told LADbible: "For me, it's the ultimate test of your manhood.

"You won't get anything more raw than having a fight with your bare fists.

"Something's going to get broken, something's going to bleed. These men are going into it knowing that this isn't a case of it might happen. It definitely will happen.

"It's the most extreme sport you can do.

"Professional boxing is good. MMA is good. Muay Thai is good. They're all extreme, hard sports, but bare-knuckle boxing has just got that extra venom."

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