Australian women’s featherweight starlet Megan Anderson makes her debut for Invicta Fighting Championships at Invicta 14 on Saturday, September 12th in Kansas City. I had the opportunity to interview her and she told me how much she’s looking forward to her fight. “I’m pretty excited to finally have my debut fight for Invicta FC. With my last scheduled fight not going through due to my opponent not turning up, I’m super keen to get back into the cage and unleash.”
Megan will be facing Cindy Dandois, who will be competing in her second fight for Invicta. So how does Megan think she matches up with the Belgian? “This is a very good match up for me I feel.” Megan replied. “She’s quite a well-known name in the industry and it will be a good name to have a win over. She’s more of a grappler and makes no secret that she doesn’t like getting hit so I think she’s going to try and take it to the ground; however, that won’t happen and I’ll make her pay for it. If the fight goes to the ground, it’ll be because I hit her there.” Megan stands at 6 feet tall; huge for the weight class. I asked if that size would be a factor against Dandois. “It’s going to play a massive factor in this fight. I’m a big featherweight and I mean business. She’s not going to have come up against someone so big and strong before who is ready to get into that cage with bad intentions.”
With that size advantage can come issues with making weight, but Megan didn’t seem at all concerned by that when I asked about her preparations. “My training and weight cut is going great!” She said. “I’m feeling amazing and everything is coming together nicely. I’m the fittest, fastest, strongest version of myself yet and that will reflect in my win. I cut a lot of weight so they’re never easy for me but that’s what needs to be done for the sport so there’s no point complaining about it. Each weight cut I understand a little bit more about my body so I can make changes and improvements for the next weight cut.”
Megan is one of a few fighters who like to have some fun with their weigh-ins, and recently took to Twitter to ask her followers for suggestions on what to wear, but she’s keeping her decision to herself. “I have chosen a superhero for the weigh in. It’s top secret though and you’ll have to tune in to UFC Fight Pass to see who it’ll be!”
When the fun of the weigh-in is over however, it is all business for the ruthless Megan, with nothing but an impressive win on her mind going into her match with Dandois. When I asked her what a win would do for her, she answered “I think a win will put me in good stead as a serious contender in the division. Honestly though, I’m not looking at that right now. I’m going to make a statement Sept 12 and then I’ll fight whoever Invicta matches me with and I’ll keep winning until I’m at the top.”
At just 25, Megan looks to have a bright future in the sport and many years of battles ahead. But, will that future include fighting for the UFC? “I would love for the UFC to bring in a 145lb division!” Megan enthused when I asked about that possibility. “I’m hoping they do so in the next year or so but we’ll have to see. It’s a growing division; however, with young athletes like myself on the rise, I’m sure the UFC will start taking notice and look at implementing a division.”
Of course, the name on most MMA fans lips as far as women’s featherweights go is Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino, the current Invicta champion. “It honestly doesn’t bother me whether I fight her or fight someone else for the belt.” Was Megan’s reply when I asked if that was a fight she is targeting. “I’ll fight whoever I need to in order to be number 1.”
With women’s MMA constantly gaining more and more popularity, much of which is down to the rise of Invicta, the possibilities for a young fighter like Megan are immense. Following in the footsteps of fellow countrywomen Alex Chambers and Bec Rawlings, I asked about the growth of women’s MMA and also what the reception has been to her career in Australia. “I’m pretty excited to be a part of the growth of Women’s MMA,” she began, “However it still has a long way to go. Back home, I guess my rise has been received both positively and negatively. I honestly just keep my head down, train hard, put in the hours and stay in my bubble. I’m focussed on what I need to do and I hope that I can be an inspiration to female mixed martial artists in Australia progressing through the ranks.”
Before concluding the interview, Megan had this to say to her fans. “A huge thank you to all the fans and people who support me. I hope you tune in September 12th on UFC Fight Pass and watch this Aussie gal put on a display of beautiful violence!”
Invicta 14 takes place on September 12th. As Megan said, you can catch her fight against Dandois, as well as all the action from an exciting looking card, live on UFC Fight Pass. I’d like to thank Megan once again for the interview and also her manager Adam Martin. You can follow Megan on twitter @MeganA_mma and be sure to tune in to Invicta this coming Saturday.
*Watch* Bellator 185 Weigh in: Live Stream, Results
Watch the live weigh-ins for Bellator 185 here.
Gegard Mousasi takes on Alexander Slemenko live this Friday night October 20th at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville CT. This is the first appearance for Mousasi in the Bellator cage as he looks to secure a title shot with a win over the very tough former Bellator champion Slemenko. Joining these men of the main card will be a pair of welterweights as Neiman Gracie from the famous Gracie BJJ family takes on Zak Bucia in the co-main event.
Full Weigh-in Results: (Updated in real time)
Gegard Mousasi (185) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (186)
Neiman Gracie (170.5) vs. Zak Bucia (170)
Heather Hardy (126) vs. Kristina Williams (126)
Ryan Quinn (155.5) vs. Marcus Surin (155)
Ana Julaton (125.5) vs. Lisa Blaine (122)
Jordan Young (200) vs. Alec Hooben (194)
Costello van Steenis (185) vs. Steve Skrzat (186)
Vinicius de Jesus (170) vs. Joaquin Buckley (171)
John Beneduce (154.5) vs. Dean Hancock (155)
Timothy Wheeler (144) vs. Pete Rogers (144)
Don Shainis (150) vs. Matthew Denning (149)
Frank Sforza (149) vs. Vovka Clay (150)
Kevin Carrier (156) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (153)
John Lopez (126) vs. Billy Giovanella (125)
Bellator 185- How to Watch, Times and Fight Card
Bellator is once again heading to Mohegan Sun in Uncasville Connecticut, and this time they are bringing with them one of the most anticipated former UFC fighter turned Bellator stars’ debut. Gegard Mousasi will be making his first appearance in the Bellator cage against a former Bellator champion in Alexander Shlemenko. Although this event has lost some of its star power over the last several weeks, it is still stacked and you can bet that the main event will bring some fireworks.
Earlier in the month, it was announced that King Mo had suffered an injury that had forced him out of his co-main event fight with former middleweight champion Liam McGeary. Bellator worked quickly to secure a replacement opponent for McGeary in Bubba McDaniels. Unfortunately for McDaniels and the fans alike, McGeary had later suffered an injury of his own and the fight was removed from the card.
This left a spot open in the co-main event slot, which would be filled by a welterweight matchup between Brennan Ward and David Rickels. Just four days out from the fight, Bellator announced that Ward had also become injured and the fight has been removed from the card as well. The main card has been shuffled around and the welterweight bout between Neiman Gracie and Zak Bucia will now serve as the co-main event.
Main Card- Spike TV (US/Canada) Spike UK (UK)- 9 pm EDT, 6 pm PDT, 2 pm UK
- Middleweight Main Event: Gegard Mousasi (42-6-2) vs. Alexander Shlemenko (56-9, 1 NC)
- Welterweight Feature Bout: Neiman Gracie (6-0) vs. Zak Bucia (18-8)
- Women’s Flyweight Feature Bout: Heather Hardy (1-0) vs. Kristina Williams (Debut)
- Lightweight Feature Bout: Ryan Quinn (13-7) vs. Marcus Surin (4-0)
- Women’s Flyweight Feature Bout: Ana Julaton (2-2) vs. Lisa Blaine (1-0)
Preliminary Card- Live Stream (MMA Latest New)- 7 pm EDT, 4 pm PDT, 12 pm UK
- 195 lb. Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Jordan Young (6-0) vs. Alec Hooben (5-3)
- Middleweight Preliminary Bout: Costello van Steenis (8-1) vs. Steve Skrzat (8-9)
- Welterweight Preliminary Bout: Vinicius de Jesus (5-1) vs. Joaquin Buckley (7-1)
- Lightweight Preliminary Bout: John Beneduce (2-1) vs. Dean Hancock (2-1)
- Featherweight Preliminary Bout: Timothy Wheeler (1-4) vs. Pete Rogers (2-4)
- 150 lb. Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Don Shainis (3-1) vs. Matthew Denning (5-6)
- 150 lb. Catchweight Preliminary Bout: Frank Sforza (6-0) vs. Vovka Clay (3-2)
- Lightweight Preliminary Bout: Kevin Carrier (Pro Debut) vs. Jose Antonio Perez (Pro Debut)
- Flyweight Preliminary Bout: John Lopez (6-4) vs. Billy Giovanella (9-5)
EXCLUSIVE: Jack Shore talks Cage Warriors 87 Opponent Change, Pressure and Being Ready for A Big Opportunity
Jack Shore, a promising up and coming Welsh Featherweight who will be fighting on his fourth main Cage Warriors card in only his sixth professional fight. Despite his opponent, Federico Mini, dropping out days prior to the event, Shore isn’t concerned ahead of the opponent change. “Just another fight, I’m ready for anything come fight night and I’m looking forward to the challenge”. Cage Warriors have confirmed that Shore will now be fighting Italian, Mattia Galbiati.
Shore last fought at the Newport Centre, Wales at Cage Warriors 83, defeating his opponent Konmon Deh convincingly with a first-round submission. The crowd was electric for both his entrance and when his opponent tapped due to armbar, “I have a massive following and they like to make themselves heard on fight night, it’s getting bigger and bigger every time!”
Whilst using his extensive grappling to win the fight, the Tillery Combat MMA Academy fighter was very aggressive with his strikes on the ground, “I believe my grappling style is very different to what people are used to seeing and that’s why it’s entertaining to watch. I’m always looking to advance and put the pressure on, but I also try to use punches and elbows to set up my transitions.”
Being undefeated throughout his amateur career (including winning the IMMAF European Championships), to then continue being undefeated throughout his early professional career, Shore has a mature mindset for such a young fighter to how the sport works, “Obviously no one wants to lose but you have to be aware that it’s a possibility because anything can happen in this sport. But by being aware it allows me to train and prepare correctly to do everything I can (do) to prevent that from happening.”
Whilst growing up, Shore states that he wasn’t the most confident of people, “As a kid growing up I was never the world’s most confident person.” Cage Warriors being on BT Sport within the UK, being the biggest European MMA promotion, and having the following Shore has, he feels no pressure of fighting, “But as far as MMA is concerned I don’t feel any pressure at all. There’s obviously the fight day nerves but anyone will tell you I deal with them very well and am more than comfortable in that environment.”
With the current revolution of MMA in Wales occurring, former Cage Warriors fighters Brett Johns, Jack Marshman and John Philips all in the UFC, Josh Reed who has just come off a title shot with Cage Warriors Bantamweight champion Nathaniel Wood, Lewis Long being the best Welterweight in the UK. It brings a realistic opportunity of making the UFC, “Definitely. Since the first bunch of Welsh guys have been signed to the UFC it’s shown for guys like me, Lewis Long and Josh Reed that what we are pushing for is no doubt achievable. I believe that if we keep doing what we are doing then that dream won’t be too far away.”
Whilst having such a successful start to his professional career, and with the attention, this young Welshman is bringing, Shore is in no rush for the Cage Warriors belt, but is prepared if the opportunity arises. “I’m just taking one fight at a time. I’m aware that I’m still young in terms of my pro career so I will continue to fight whoever Cage Warriors put in front of me. Should a big opportunity like that present itself I’ll make sure I’m ready.”
Shore seems to be mature for someone of the age of just 22, the future seems bright for the young Welshman. Jack Shore fights on the up and coming Cage Warriors 87 card Saturday, 14th October at the Newport Centre, Newport, Wales. The event will be free-to-air on UK sports channels FreeSports, as well as be on UFC FightPass and via the red button on BT Sport.
Check the main card out for Cage Warriors 87 below:
Lewis Long vs Roberto Soldic (Welterweight)
Craig White vs Matt Inman (Welterweight)
Jack Shore vs Mattia Galbiati (Featherweight)
Aiden Lee vs Ludovit Klein (Featherweight)
Aaron Khalid vs Ross Houston (Welterweight)
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