CageWarriors 83 : Wales : The Review

Many battles have been fought over the history of time in the beautiful land we call Wales, with stunning castles being built in the process, overseeing the exploits of the enemy ahead. Tales of Welsh knights and similar folklore have been passed down generations, bringing to mind a Warrior who feared nothing and no one, a man who would take on dragons and unearthly creatures, never knowing if he would survive the day. Even the legend of King Arthur was rumored to have taken place in Caerleon, Newport, a place not too far away from a Warriors event that took place on Saturday evening, with these battles being fought in a cage, with courage and honour that any Welsh knight from the past would be very proud of. This event was CageWarriors Wales, with a fight card that would be downright clever with every fight being a demonstration of hard work and persistence.

I always look forward to attending each one of these shows as Richard Shore and Colin Mould never fail to showcase the local amateur talent as well as the wealth of talent from across the bridge. Watching these fighters rise to pro level, to me, is one of the best things to be able to do in this sport and something I am personally very thankful for. Every fighter has a story and all have to start somewhere. This show is a perfect place to tell that story from beginning to end and with guests like Brett Johns, familiar faces like Jack Marshman and legends like Dan Hardy attending, this is a must see for fans all over the UK.

I had gone along with my partner in crime Cherie Buck, and Irish Cuts woman Jessica Isaacson, who had been visiting me for the weekend, and as we settled down to watch the evenings events, an air of excitement started filling the room for the fights ahead.

As MC Hywel Chaplin and referee Simon Small took to the cage for the unified amateur fights, it was time for me to pick up the pen and paper and write.

With the first fight being Aivaras Gaciauskas v Jaxson Hembury setting a good pace with Aivaras winning via Unanimous Decision, the Amateurs really set the standards high with Gloucester Range getting two out of three wins with both Andy Cole and Christian Duncan easing their TKO trophys. I have spoken about Christian Duncan before and really believe he is a top prospect for Mark Weir.

The Tillery Combat Wagon was full speed ahead with Jack Tucker and his Unanimous Decision win over Craig Rawlins, Tucker always being interesting to watch and with the Nails team bringing the ever exciting Struan Coxan, this fighter KO’d his opponent Tom Enstone as he stood in front of him, out cold. Once again Nails never fail to bring the fight, and the supporters.

Now it was time for the much-anticipated Pro Undercard and a change of referees as Rich Mitchell and Marc Goddard took over. With Tillery Combats Kris Edwards displaying a very stealth RNC on his opponent Damo Weeden and Irish fighter Joe McColgan showing his power and striking ability over his opponent Richard Williams, grabbing a guillotine choke win at 4.59 secs at the near end of the third round, that brought us to the start of the much anticipated Pro MMA televised live event and what an event it was.

Konman Deh v Jack Shore was to be the biggest test of Shores fight career so far, Shore showing what a top class athlete he is by taking this fight to the ground, not giving Deh an inch of space, reigning strikes down as he went along his merry way resulting in an armbar win over Deh in the first round. Jack Shore is Wales secret sauce, but not so much a secret now, as there aren’t many around who don’t know who Shore is and what he is capable of. Even to the untrained eye, Jack is an absolute pleasure to watch on the ground as he unfolds his opponent in spectacular fashion, always to the chant of a similar spectacular audience. Jack Shore is certainly on fire!!

Josh Reed v Gavin Kelly brought a clash of the Celts as Kelly greeted Reed with a front kick to the face, with both finding their own pace, ending with Reed coming in with that powerful flurry of strikes that no man could escape, resulting in Marc Goddard rushing forward to hold Kellys head as his legs gave way from underneath him. Reed winning via a pretty cool KO.

Scott Clist v Soren Bak became a back and fore game of attack and defence of the dreaded crucifix submission with Bak fiercely trying to apply and Clist fiercely defending, a fight that became bloodied on Clists behalf turning his pure white hair to an Orange shade, from a cut to his eyebrow, a fight that had everything in it, resulting in a Unanimous Decision win for Bak, with Clist holding Baks hand up to show support in the decision win.

The final fight of the night was a very much anticipated battle between Che Mills and Lew Long. I had spoken to a very colourful purple shirted Lew Long at the beginning of the night and he was in a positive mood. Neither of us could have guessed the very unique outcome to end the fight.

Both fighters looked sharp and on point as they waited for Marc Goddard to start the fight. As Lew Long level changed and succeeded in a very strong fluent takedown, Che Mills cried out in pain and tapped furiously on Lews back, resulting in Marc Goddard flying on to Che’s body to stop the fight. Che’s knee had torn and that was that, with Lew respectfully kneeling in front of his opponent until he had been cleared to move, Lew won the fight, making Lew a very dangerous Welterweight in the division.

Once again Cagewarriors Wales showing the immense talent we have in Wales and the UK. Many thanks to Richard Shore and Colin Mould for having us. I really enjoy these reports with every show.

Photography credit to the very lovely Huw Fairclough.

Article by Beccy Davies

Till next time Medieval Warriors.