De Fries was initially slated to face another former UFC fighter, Damien Grabowski, who was forced from the card due to injury, which was initially reported by MMA.pl. On Wednesday, KSW revealed that Henrique would instead face the English champion via social media.
De Fries (17-6-0) has been in the best form of his career under the KSW banner, taking out three of the promotion’s most dangerous fighters—Michal Andryszak, Karol Bedorf and light heavyweight champion Tomasz Narkun—since making his debut under the banner in Apr. 2018. The English heavyweight rides a five-fight win streak into the contest, with his last victory coming against Narkun in their champion vs. champion bout.
Henrique (12-5-0) recorded an upset win in his KSW debut against former heavyweight champion Michal Andryszak. The victory was somewhat controversial as the Polish heavyweight immediately protested the decision to stop the fight after the referee had deemed to be unconscious due to the choke the Brazilian applied in the second-round. In his six fights in the UFC, Henrique compiled a record of 2-4, suffering consecutive losses to Marcin Tybura, Arjan Bhullar and Ryan Spann before his 2018 release.
KSW also announced that former welterweight champion Dricus Du Plessis (12-2-0) will return to action at the London event as a middleweight when he takes on promotional newcomer Joilton Santos (30-7-0).