As an IMMAF amateur European champion and the son of Welsh MMA veteran, Jack Shore has had to deal with a lot of expectations since his first fight as a professional.
When he takes to the cage on Saturday night in front of his adoring Welsh crowd, however, “Tank” is completely aware that there are not many marquees bigger than the Cage Warriors centenary show.
Even if there was no title at stake in his clash with fellow unbeaten prospect Mike Ekundayo, Shore believes having main event status at Cage Warriors 100 will always be a memorable moment for him.
“It’s massive,” Shore told Eurobash. “To fight on a card like Cage Warriors 100 is massive in itself. Then you add the fact that it’s in my backyard and then you add the fact that it’s a world title fight too, outside of the UFC the stakes don’t get much higher than this.
“This is something that I’ll remember for the rest of my life. I’ve said this a couple of times in the lead up to the fight, but whenever people look back at the Cage Warriors 100 card, it will always be my name as the headline fight and that’s something that nobody can take away from me and it’s something I’m very proud of.”
If everything had gone according to plan, Shore would already have claimed bantamweight gold at Cage Warriors 97. After two opponents fell from the date, Shore took a dominant victory in a catchweight bout against 11th-hour replacement, Wesley Maia, but insists that the waiting game has only made him hungrier.
“I’ve had pretty much two fight camps going for that title, so for this one, I’m clucking to get my hands on it and to finally get it wrapped around my waist. On Saturday night that’s all that’s gonna be on my mind and that’s what I have every intention of doing. It’s been a long time coming and I’m sure on Saturday it will come to fruition.”
The Welsh bantamweight heaped praise on Ekundayo’s wrestling ability, but hopes to put the Titan fighter in positions that all of his other opponents didn’t manage to.
“It’s no secret what he does, he’s very good at what he does. He’s very wrestle heavy. He comes out, he pushes for that takedown, he wants to put the pressure on and he wants to grind away on his opponents from top position,” explained Shore.
“There have been a couple of times that he’s gone the distance, but a lot of times his opponents seem to…I don’t want to say crumble…but they tend to desperately look for a way out of a position and they end up getting caught in a choke or something like that.
“He’s got one of those styles where it’s good as long as you can implement it, but coming up against someone who can defend the takedown or who is good off their back…it will be interesting to see other aspects of his game should I stop his takedown or put him on his back. There are a lot of questions to be answered on the night.”
“Tank” expects to finish the fight within the 25-minute time limit:
“I’m not set on anything for this, but I do see a finish. I just don’t see it going the full five rounds. I can see a finish, I don’t think it’s gonna be an early one because it’ll be a tough grinding fight, but I can definitely see a finish whether it’s on the ground or on the feet.”
Check out the latest episode of Eurobash. The Jack Shore interview begins 1:01:35.