After a dull time for MMA promoters in the United Kingdom, there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel finally. Shows across the country are now finding their feet once more and allowing athletes to break that long haul of inactivity.
Among them is the well-recognised Evolution of Combat, which will host EOC 8 on August 7th from the Morris Equestrian Centre in Kilmarnock, Scotland. Evolution of Combat has a great line-up in-store featuring multiple disciplines such as Submission Grappling, MMA, Kickboxing and Muay Thai. The full-fight card is yet to be released.
I had the pleasure of sitting down with one of the athletes on the night who is competing on the card and is eager to make a statement in Igor Wojtas. Wojtas makes the walk for the very first time out of his native country Poland, under the watchful eye of Brian Gallacher. “GUCIO” will face off against Iain Postletwaite.
Igor Wojtas vs Iain Postletwaite
Igor Wojtas (8-7) will hope to get off to a clean start under Brian Gallagher. The 26-year old has been out of action for over a year but insists he’s been constantly working his craft and improving his skill-set. The last outing for “GUCIO” resulted in a unanimous decision loss at the hands of Patryk Trytek at Babilon MMA 15.
Wojtas has shown in his previous fights that he’s a difficult man to get out of there and has the durability to go the distance. The Polish international has only been finished twice in his career, dating back to 2013 when his journey began. After that, Igor then progressed to earn a notable seven-fight win streak.
Iain Postletwaite (2-4) is also suffering from a prolonged period out from MMA competition. The Scotsman’s last outing occurred at EOC 6, where he lost via rear-naked choke to Kieran O’Brien. Posletwaite is no stranger to the established shows in the United Kingdom, having previously fought on On Top, Almighty FC and EOC.
If we are going by history and stats, Postletwaite has never seen the judges scorecards in six professional fights. Both his victories have come inside the distance, knocking out Robert Carlin and submitting Mike D’Aguiar.
Interview with Igor Wotjas
By the time you compete, it will have been a year outside the octagon. How are you feeling ahead of your scheduled bout on August 7th at EOC 8, and what have you been doing to keep yourself active and busy?
Igor Wojtas – “Hi, nice to meet you! I feel great. I am very motivated for the next fight. Last few months, I spent mostly on the mat and worked hard. I was focusing on that.”
All your previous fights have taken place in Poland. This will be your first in Scotland. Can you talk to me about the transition to The Scottish Hit Squad and tell us why you made that move?
Igor Wojtas – “Exactly, It’s my first fight outside of Poland, but usually, in Poland, I had my fights far from my home town. The cage is the same everywhere.”
“As for the transition to the Scottish Hit Squad, a few years ago, I had the opportunity to come to practice before the previous fights. My friend Kacper Rot from the former gym took me to this place. I saw Coach Brian’s approach to his fighters and their level and approach to training. The main reason for the decision was my progress in MMA. I want to achieve as much as possible. The emphasis was mainly on BJJ in the former gym, and fewer people wanted to train MMA. It was one of the best decisions in my life.”
On the topic of The Scottish Hit Squad, what do you feel Brain Gallacher has added to your game that you lacked before?
Igor Wojtas – “I feel he has helped improve my overall game. Brian shows me a lot of good techniques all the time. I feel a complete fighter now and want to show it in the next fight. I can feel great progress under his eye, and I know that we are going in the right direction.”
At 26-years old, you are still extremely young in this game. What’s the end goal for Igor Wojtas? Where would you like to see yourself five years from now?
Igor Wojtas – “The main goal is to win more fights and fight for a big organization. I believe it strongly, and I work hard for it.”
When I speak with up and coming fighters, I like to give the audience a background on the fighter themselves. Can you tell me a bit about your experience and how and why you first got involved with the sport?
Igor Wojtas – “It started when my older brother started training martial arts and offered to take me to BJJ training. Our main goal was to learn self-defence. But after winning my first gold medal at my first small BJJ competition, it motivated me even more. This is how it started and continues to this day.”
“At the same time, my friend showed me a highlight from Pride and old UFC. Seeing that, I felt respect for this sport and wanted to learn to fight as well.”
For the people who haven’t seen you fight before, is there anyone at the highest level that you could compare your fighting style to? To give the audience, a sneak peek of what they can expect on fight night?
Igor Wojtas – “I want to show my style to new fans, and I hope to convince them to follow me. Several of my Polish friends compared me to the style of Frankie Edgar. A tough head and a big heart to fight.”
On to your opponent in Iain Postlewaite. What’s your thoughts on Iain as an opponent? Do you think this is a fight that suits you? If so, why?
Igor Wojtas – “By the current world situation, every fight suits me. I feel hungry to fight. As for my opponent, I think he is a good contender based on BJJ. I respect him, and I think we will show a good fight.”
What do you believe the keys to defeating Iain Postlewaite are on Aug 7?
Igor Wojtas – “Me and coach Brian have watched his fights, including my friends from the gym too. As for the fight, we have our gamelan. But you have to wait until 7th August.”
Lastly, can we get an official fight prediction from you? How do you see this fight playing out?
Igor Wojtas – “I would like to finish the fight early. I want to show the progress I’ve made since training at The Scottish Hit Squad. But I am a fighter who has gone the full distance, and I feel good doing so.”
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All image credits to Evolution Of Combat