At just 23 years old, Jack Shore is one of the hottest bantamweight prospects in MMA. With the Cage Warriors title now firmly in his grasp, Shore has already made a name for himself in the European market. Unbeaten in his professional (10-0) and amateur (11-0) career, it’s only a matter of time before Shore joins the ranks of the world’s elite bantamweights. Now that the dust has settled on what was a colossal 2018, Shore reflected on his previous year’s success by saying ““It feels great! It’s been a long time coming! I’ve had 9 of my 10 pro fights under the cage Warriors banner and I’ve been eyeing up that title from my first fight, so to final get it wrapped around my waist was a great feeling.”
Of course, winning the title in Cardiff helped cement the occasion but no matter where in the world the fight was taking place, Shore only had one goal in mind on December 8th last year. The confidence and determination were clear for all to see but the Welsh backing on the night certainly played a part. “It’s always an added bonus fighting at home, I get huge support wherever I fight but at home the atmosphere really is something special! But yes, as you said, it didn’t matter where or who I was fighting for that title, in my mind the outcome was always going to be the same!”
For many, it may have been surprising how one sided the fight was with Mike Ekundayo but it wasn’t a surprise to Shore who responded by saying “I wouldn’t say I was surprised at how the fight went as a whole but I was surprised at how quickly I was able to take control” Ekundayo was a dangerous opponent and this is something that Jack was all too aware of. “Mike’s a very skilled and strong wrestler so I expected it to be a bit closer early on and then take over as the fight went on, but fortunately I was able to influence my skills right from the get-go”.
Jack continued by saying “The initial game plan was to keep the fight on the feet with my boxing and use my takedown defence to make him work and tire, but as soon as we clinched up early and I got that takedown I get that I had the advantage on the ground and used my pressure and ground and pound to take over.” Shore was also full of praise for the defeated Ekundayo by saying “I’ve got to give credit to Mike for his toughness. A lot of people have given in when I apply that sort of ground pressure, but he was as tough as they come and was in it to the end.”
After his success in 2018, it was no surprise that Shore was voted Cage Warriors Fighter of the Year. This achievement is made all the more sweeter as it’s voted for by the fans. This is something that Shore fully acknowledges. “To win 2018 fighter of the year was a great feeling! Obviously, it’s always nice to win an award but when it’s one that’s voted for by the fans it makes it that little bit more special! A huge thank you to everyone who voted!”
Shore is scheduled to make his first title defence at CW104 in Cardiff on April 27th. With no news on an opponent yet, Shore said that “I know Cage Warriors have a few shows early on in the year, so I imagine once they have those cards sorted, they’ll start working on the 104 card. But as I’ve shown in the past, I’m game to fight whoever they put in front of me. Every fight in Cage Warriors is a tough fight, it’s not a promotion where you get given easy fights”.
It’s no secret that every fighter aims to hit the highest highs in the world of MMA by someday competing in the UFC with the best in the world and Shore is no different. When asked his opinion on the current state of the UFC bantamweight division, Jack responded by saying “It’s one of the most stacked divisions in the UFC in my opinion and one that has so many highly skilled guys! There’re no easy fights at Bantamweight in the UFC it’s full of sharks and I’m looking forward to the day where I get to mix it with those guys!”
The ways things are currently going, that day may not be that far off. Shore has all the tools to compete with the best in the world and seeing him mixing it up with the elite bantamweights will only be a matter of time. With the past three Cage Warriors bantamweight champions all moving on to either the UFC (Nathaniel Wood and Brett Johns) or ONE Championship (Tait Turo), don’t be surprised if you see Shore having his hand raised in the octagon in the not so distant future.