A fired-up Sam Spencer is hunting a stoppage victory ahead of his third appearance under Cage Warriors.
Cage Warriors 141 takes place on July 22nd in London, England, at the Indigo in the O2 arena. The fight card is stacked with talent as the organisation celebrates its 20th anniversary of business.
Among the card is 28-year-old Sam Spencer, who recently returned to competition at Cage Warriors 136 in Manchester after a haul of inactivity. The Englishman dropped a rear-naked-choke loss to Reece McEwan and, on July 22nd, is looking to right the wrong when squared off against Adam Amarasinghe.
We had the pleasure of catching up with Sam ahead of fight night. Read the full exclusive interview below.
Interview With Sam Spencer
A quick three-month turnaround for you this time around, Sam. I bet that feels good to say after the long haul of in-activity? Are you looking to make it an active year?
Yeah, it definitely feels like I kept the momentum of training rolling and kept my eye in timing-wise after my last run out at Cage Warriors 136. I had multiple injuries back to back that kept me out of competition for three years, so yeah, definitely nice to get back active, and yes, I would like to fight once or twice more before year-end.
You met Reece McEwan at Cage Warriors 136 in Manchester in April. As stated, this was your return after not competing in active MMA competition since 2019. How much did you enjoy the process of preparing for a fight again, fight week, and being back inside the cage? Talk to me about how you felt?
I have been fighting since I was 17, and I help to coach a full team of amateur and professional fighters at Manchester Predators. That means cornering at shows at least once a month, so despite the personal layoff from fighting, the process was pretty familiar to me.
As a close-knit team, we always go through camps and weight cuts etc., together, but it was good fun to go through it all again with the added nerves and pressure of me being the one that’s competing for the first time in 3+ years.
I will say that being back in the cage competing at game speed took me at least a round to adjust to. Before I knew it, I hadn’t thrown a single shot and was already in a not-so-great position with Reece on top of me. It was a rough reintroduction to fighting, but after the first round, I felt back up to speed.
Sam Spencer Reflects on Cage Warriors 141
On the night the result didn’t go your way, what do you feel went wrong in there? Did time away play a factor in the contest, do you think? What’s your honest assessment of what went down?
Yeah, I definitely feel that the time away cost me the first round. I felt like I was waiting for some sort of green light to get busy and start being offensive. Obviously, that never came, and I got taken down, and my back was taken. Reece always starts fast, so I should have been expecting it, but I think not being in there for so long and three years of operating casually in the gym rather than urgently in competition caused the slow start.
The second round was probably one of my best-ever rounds, though. I found my timing, landed good shots and almost finished him with the arm triangle, but the round ended, and I truly felt like I was going to come out in the third and put him away. I knew he was tiring, and I was fresh as a daisy. To be fair to Reece, he regrouped in between 2 and 3 and came out strong, capitalised on a couple of technical mistakes on my part and secured a strong top position. I felt like I could have easily survived the round but would have lost the decision 29-28, so I tried to spin out of back control as a last-ditch attempt at escaping, and Reece did a great job catching the choke in the transition.
Overall I do feel like I was a bit slow to react to Reece’s offensive wrestling, probably due to the time away with a knee injury, meaning I hadn’t wrestled consistently for the previous couple of years. I think I beat him nine times out of 10 in a rematch with the holes in my game addressed. Maybe that’s one for the future.
CW 20th Anniversary
This upcoming fight card at Cage Warriors 141 has such a special feeling to it. On the 20th anniversary, a sold-out crowd in London with eyes from all over the globe on it. What does it mean to you to be involved in such a historical event, or is that not even something you think about?
To be honest, I haven’t thought much about it. With the fight being in London, it’s the first time I have fought outside of the northwest in all my fights, both amateur and pro. I am more looking forward to having an ‘away day’ than taking part in a ‘historic’ event.
Normally I have a big home crowd cheering me on. This time will be different, with nowhere near as many making the trip down from the North. I’m planning on making a statement down South and hopefully make a few new fans down there. I’m excited for the fight for those reasons, but I haven’t been on social media much this camp, so I haven’t really seen much of the ’20th Anniversary’ promo, so no, that’s not really a big deal for me.
Spencer Talks Opposition
On the night, Adam Amarasinghe will be the opponent standing across the Octagon from you. Talk me through your thoughts on the fight and Adam as an opponent? Where do you think the fight suits you?
I have watched all of Adam’s fights that are online, and I think I match up very well with him, and I believe myself to be a more powerful striker and a stronger grappler, with him potentially having a bit of a speed advantage due to him coming up from the weight class below.
I think the fight makes for a banger, with both of us having dynamic, exciting styles. I just think I will be more dangerous and more well-rounded than him. He actually messaged me to initially arrange the fight, he was very polite and cordial about it, but I feel like sometimes you should be careful what you wish for.
Now you’ve been in there and cleared the cobwebs last time out, what can those in attendance and those watching on UFC Fight Pass expect to see from Sam Spencer on July 22nd?
I plan on going out there and putting Adam away within the distance. He is a solid opponent, but I have never lost two fights in a row in my whole career, and coming off a loss lights a serious fire under your arse. For those watching, expect violence.
Featured image credits to FCC/Graham Finney