Tom Breese & The Importance of UFC Norfolk
By James Lee
A flood of British talent are reigning supreme in combat. As Darren Till’s shadow reigns over the middleweight division and Scotland’s Joanne Calderwood is set to challenge for the flyweight title, a foreshadowing of the future several years ago would have had Tom Breese in that mix.
The Birmingham fighter was once tipped as the biggest prospect from the UK. A run of ten unbeaten including wins over Cathal Pendred and Keita Nakamura saw him predicted to be amongst the top of the welterweight pact, much like his fellow training partner Leon Edwards is now.
A close split decision loss to Sean Strickland however, saw him spent nearly two years away from the sport before returning against Dan Kelly at middleweight in Liverpool.
Although expected to fuel his redemption, his withdrawal from the UFC London a card a year on on fight day poses more questions and will mean it will be another two years by the time he steps into the cage on Saturday since his last outing.
As once winning had implications in a ranking sense, now and perhaps sadly, his fight with Brendan Allen has little consequence in progression, although it may be instrumental in solving some issues he has been facing the past few years.
Right now, the walk to the octagon is crucial.
Forgetting the past and future, but concentrating on the present, with his American opponent being that currently.
Although Allen is relatively unknown, he has impressed in his outings in both Dana White’s Contender Series and his UFC debut last October in Boston where he beat Kevin Holland by submission.
All focus from Breese should be on himself.
The past is behind him and with age on his side, the testing times can be used as positives for the future.
There is something special about Team Renegade with global success on the verge. As Leon Edwards looks to earn his title shot with a win over Tyron Woodley, his brother Fabian is becoming a well-established name in Bellator simultaneously.
Breese has the quality to be amongst them. His path to that starts in Norfolk, where he can once again prove himself in the UFC octagon and establish his lost British hype.