Bare-knuckle fighter urges fans to pray for him before surgery after brutal KO

Former UFC star Melvin Guillard asked fans to keep him in their prayers ahead of undergoing surgery following a gruesome facial injury while competing in the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship.

Guillard was pummelled through the ropes after just 59 seconds of his fourth BKFC outing against Joe Riggs on Saturday in Montana – suffering a fourth straight defeat with the promotion.

And Guillard, who battled it out against the likes of Nate Diaz, Justin Gaethje and Donald Cerrone during a near 10-year sting with UFC, took to Instagram after his defeat to share sickening photos of his injuries.

Alongside multiple pictures of his severely swollen eye, Guillard wrote on Instagram: "Just found out, at 3.15am, I have five fractures in my orbital so I will be having surgery today.

"Just wanted to get my fans, friends and family the news. I'll be OK – just keep me in your prayers.

"I'll be lying if I said I wasn't a little scared right now. We'll see what happens."

Then moments later over the weekend, the 38-year-old American revealed to his fans on social media that he had undergone surgery and was leaving hospital.

Before taking to social media, he had earlier told his fans that he had received stitches and was waiting to hear back on the results of scans, including an MRI, to determine whether an operation was necessary.

The defeat on Saturday meant it was four losses out of four with the promotion, but he didn't appear too downbeat about his fortunes.

"Appreciate the love from all my fans and supporters… just not going to slow me down, [nor] stop me from accomplishing my goal," he added.

Despite being positive about his future, the same can't be said for fans of MMA.

MMA reporter Tom Taylor took to Twitter, writing: "No commission should be letting Melvin Guillard fight at this point. #BKFCMONTANA "

Another MMA fan, called @jack996, said on Twitter: "Guilard was in terrible shape for this… his punches looked slow and he went down from the first punch Riggs threw… he seriously needs to stop.

"BKFC is an absolute joke… their whole roster is washed up MMA fighters."

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