Sami Hoque is eager to add his name to a title alongside several of his teammates at ACE MMA. On Sept.10, he has the opportunity to do so when he squares off with Kyle Jones in a featherweight contest at Full Contact Contender 30.
FCC has put together an incredibly well-matched card in Bolton, filled with the country’s hottest prospects.
We the pleasure of catching up with Sami Hoque ahead of the biggest fight of his amateur career. Read the full exclusive interview below.
Interview With Sami Hoque
A few weeks out now from an opportunity to get your hands on gold, something you’ve campaigned for as of late. How satisfying does it feel being giving that opportunity to reward yourself for all the hard work over the last few years you’ve put in?
Alhamdulillah. I’m so ready to fight for and win my first title. My performances have established me as one of the best amateurs coming through in the UK/ Ireland, and winning gold at FCC will set up some exciting fights and more belts in the future.
We saw you at the start of the year against Luke Richardson, which was possibly your toughest test to date. You passed that test without much issue. Still, having 7/8 months to digest that performance. How did you feel you performed out there in January?
I learned a lot about myself in that fight. Even when I wasn’t 100%, I still performed and won dominantly against an undefeated prospect. It’s been a bit longer than what I would’ve liked since my last fight, but training hasn’t stopped, and I will show the seven months of levelling up that I’ve been doing.
Sami Hoque Talks Respect
Last time we spoke, you told me a win over Luke put’s your name on notice. Now you’ve achieved that, do you feel you’ve now earned that respect, granted you’re now fighting for a title on FCC?
For sure, you can’t deny me now. Throughout my career, many guys have ducked me. Even for this fight camp, I’ve had 2/3 different opponents. Although I’ve never fought on FCC before, It’s nice knowing the promotion sees me as a worthy champion giving me a title shot straight away. Respect to FCC.
For some fighters at amateur, the belts mean a whole lot. Others aren’t interested. How do you feel?
It’d be massive for me. Probably a feeling I’ll remember for the rest of my life, winning my first one especially. But I’ve got world titles in mind for the long run, so this is just the first step.
Kyle Jones as an Opponent
Talk to me about your opponent Kyle Jones. How much have you seen of him, and how do you feel you match up against one another?
My skills are very well-rounded, so anyone I get matched up with fits my style. Kyle’s good, so it’ll be interesting to see if he can solve the problems I’m going to bring.
Having watched Kyle’s previous fights, do you anticipate him bringing anything to the cage that you’ve not seen before? Anything you’ve identified that you need to be cautious of?
He’ll have the size advantage, having always fought lightweight and above, but that’s nothing new to me. Featherweight is my division, and I’ll not be giving him a warm welcome.
When I asked you last time for a prediction, you told me the fight doesn’t see the third, but you were fully prepared if it was to go the distance. Can we expect the judges to be needed on Sept. 10?
A finish would be ideal. But I wouldn’t mind a 5-round war, you know. The way I see it is the more rounds I get in, the more experience I gain, and that’s what amateur is about. Regardless, it’ll be an easy night for the judges.
Lastly, just sum up what it would mean to you to win the belt in two weeks’ time and bring it home to ACE MMA?
Come to my gym, ACE MMA, and the first thing you’ll notice is the wall of belts. To say one of those belts is mine would be an honour. Sept. 10, it’s my time.
Shoutout to my head coach Shaj Haque, grappling coach Jordan Cooper and MMA coach Sham Haque.
Thank you to my training/ sparring partners and sponsors for helping me out throughout fight camp:
ACE MMA, The Lodge Fightclub, Unit 29 Fitness North East Jiu Jitsu, Five Points Wrestling, Quality retail services ltd, Redstar Clothing, Cruze Fightwear, Pro Health Physio, Shiela’s Will, The hemp hub, EA Therapy, Sweet Dreams South Tyneside.
Featured image credits to DN4 Photography