Combat Vision MMA spoke to Gerard Williamson after his first-round submission victory against Liam Miller at Headhunters Fighting Championship on Saturday 16th September 2017.
Thank for taking the time to speak to Combat Vision MMA, Gerard. How did it feel to get your hand raised on Saturday evening.
“No worries James, thanks for giving me the opportunity. It felt pretty awesome, it’s been a long old road back to the cage and to feel that emotion again was one of the biggest draws for me getting back in there. I am lucky enough between kickboxing and MMA, I have never been beaten so long may it continue”
You won the fight in the first round by submission via standing guillotine. Has submission work been a part of your drilling heading into this fight. Once you had engaged the neck did you feel it was tight and locked on.
“We didn’t particularly work on any specific discipline in camp, we knew he had a strong striking background. But, it would have been naive for us to think he didn’t have a ground or grappling game because of that. At Scottish Hit Squad, I am lucky enough that we have such a wide variety of disciplines that it’s easy to work on all aspects of your game. Funnily enough, it is the one part of my game I am always looking to improve on. But, that’s three 1st round submission I have had in MMA. I knew that, if I got my hands clasped then I could really crank it up as I am pretty strong. I could hear big Paul screaming to get my hips titled and back him into the cage. I knew it would have only been a matter of time from there.
Did you feel stepping into the cage on Saturday night – that you wanted to get back onto the MMA scene with a bang or was it more of a case just to be back competing again was an achievement for you.
“To be honest I started this year just glad to be back training. Last year was pretty awful in that sense for me. I think in all I was on the mat at Scottish Hit Squad about 4 or 5 times the full of 2016. I was attending the MMA beginners class as well just to keep at it. I am deep with the mindset stuff just now, so as each month went by I gave myself newer goals and targets and competed in my first BJJ tournaments as well. At 35 year old and won a gold & silver between them in the 18-30 age categories”
“Before the end of April, I felt I had to prove to my coaches that I had the hunger and dedication to compete again before I could ask them to match me for a fight. Poor Brian must have got bombarded with umpteen screenshots of shows coming up before he got me this fight. I am the sort of guy now, where yes, I would consider just stepping back in the cage a massive achievement. But, at the same time, the end goal was not just to compete, but to win and then win as convincingly as you can as it’s the only way to keep challenging yourself and improve in any aspect of life”
At the end of the fight. There is a picture of you in the centre of the cage on your knees. Could you talk our readers through the emotions and your thoughts that were going through your head.
“Yeah, that picture does paint a thousand words. I wrote a caption on my Facebook page saying that I was taking a few seconds to myself to let it sink in before I enjoyed the moment. That there were 9 years of if, buts and maybes just dumped from my shoulders. I had always planned and visualised me doing that when I got the win. It was so surreal, I just listened to the buzz of the crowd, looked at my gloves, the mat and thought to myself; “well-done mate”
“I am a great believer in the ‘law of attraction’ like a certain Mr. Conor McGregor and the whole script had played out near enough as I told everyone it would do!”
You train out Scottish Hit Squad, Coatbridge. This is a well-known and highly respected gym. Being an amateur fighter who is training with top level coaches and the next generation of fighters in MMA. How important is training with this camp been to your developing amateur career.
“Enormously, it’s almost impossible for it not to help or aid you training with pros like Paul Craig, Chris Bungard, Neil Laird and Ross Cooper. As well as all the amateur fighters in the gym who are also or equally as good as some pros out there”
“There is a real buzz about the gym just now, we have some fantastic young fighters coming through as well and recently won like 10/11 fights at an interclub challenge down in Leeds where all the guys were aged under 20. It’s crazy the talent that is in the gym not to mention the BJJ guys as well who are also excelling at all tournaments they enter”