Nick Gordon
2 minute read
22 Mar 2014
8:00 am

Soldierboy all set for fight night

Nick Gordon

"Fight night has to be flawless," said Garreth McLellan as he geared up to defend his Extreme Fighting Championship middleweight title next week.

FILE PICTURE: Garreth McLellan Picture: Chris Ricco/Backpagepix.

The 30-year-old has experienced the highs of being a champion and the lows of losing his crown, a scenario he’ll be looking to avoid when he opposes JP Kruger at the Coca-Cola Dome next Thursday.

“I think the first time I put it around my waist it was a great experience and I had worked so hard to get it,” McLellan said as he reflected on his first taste of championship glory back at EFC8. He lost his belt in his first defence against Jeremy Smith, a fight that sparked one of the biggest rivalries in the sport.

“Losing it was very difficult thing to deal with and I put everything I had into getting it back. I invested my whole life to regain the belt,” the fighter, who regained the title by beating Smith inside a round late last year, said.

“Winning it the second time I can’t explain the emotions I went through. For me defending it with everything I have is the most important thing right now.”

In Kruger he faces a submission specialist who is able to snatch victory away from an opponent when defeat looks like the only option. But “Soldierboy” is well aware of this and promises to be at the top of his game when the two step into the ring.

“I work way too hard just to walk in and give it away. I’ve sweated blood and tears to keep this belt. It’s been six or seven years of hard work, so come fight night the only thing that I can do is lay it all on the line and make sure that I walk out with it again.

“The thing about JP is that he has the ability to win. He has the drive to win. In those circumstances you put a guy with the skill set that he does and together with that heart he’s a very dangerous character. I need to make sure I cover every base.”