MMA UK Awards Spotlight: The UK’s new breakout star, Cory Tait

As MMA grows in the UK, new talent is popping up everyday and one of the UK’s breakout stars of the year is Cory Tait. At 22 years old, Tait stepped into the cage at UCMMA 16 for his first professional bout, against a much more experienced fighter in Dino Gambatesa. What we witnessed that night, was arguably one of the best knockouts of the year and the possible making of a star. Cory was nominated for a MMA UK award and is currently gearing up to fight Giorgio Andrews at UCMMA 18 for the vacant UCMMA featherweight title. MMA UK did an interview with him discussing how he got into the sport, what fighters he admires and the knockout heard around Britain.

Congratulations on being nominated for the MMA UK “Knockout of the Year” and “Breakout Fighter of the Year”. How are you feeling?

I’m feeling great, man. It just goes to show that with one big fight on the big stage, everything can change. It’s crazy how quickly things are moving, but I’m enjoying it

How’d you get into MMA?

I’ve been doing for years, ever since I was little. I started with Taekwondo and it was a natural transition into the sport of MMA. I met my trainer when I was 11 and he comes from a no-holds barred sort of style and it rubbed off on me.

 

What was your first fight you saw?

I honestly don’t even remember who I saw fighting when I saw my first fight. What I do remember is that I was watching two guys beat the crap out of each other and thinking it was awesome. I never really thought I’d get into the sport myself, but here I am.

What fight camp do you fight out of

I fight out of Gintas CSD. It’s pretty funny, but no-one could actually say the name properly. I heard someone trying to announce the name before and they completely messed it up. So we decided to just keep it as Gintas CSD. Much easier to remember!

 

In your last fight against Dino Gambatesa, you gave him a kick he’ll probably never forget. How was that moment for you?

It was awesome, kind of surreal though. Someone mentioned to me that he might have damaged his knee, the way he landed. Sort of like the way Cro Cop landed after Gonzaga hit him. It’s all part of the job, but I realise that it could be me one day and I could be in a worse situation, so I don’t let it get to my head.

What made you throw that kick? It’s rarely ever seen in MMA.

When you’re sparring or fighting, there’s like a language to it. You’re trying to guess your opponents moves and he’s trying to guess mine. Basically, I didn’t really think about it, it just happened. I didn’t even think it was going to knock him out, I thought he’d just be stunned. That’s why when he fell forward; I thought he was going to attack me. Once the referee pushed me off, I realised that it was over.

 

Congratulations on being nominated for the MMA UK “Knockout of the Year” and “Breakout Fighter of the Year”. How are you feeling?

I’m feeling great, man. It just goes to show that with one big fight on the big stage, everything can change. It’s crazy how quickly things are moving, but I’m enjoying it

How’d you get into MMA?

I’ve been doing for years, ever since I was little. I started with tae-kwon-do and it was a natural transition into the sport. I met my trainer when I was 11 and he comes from a no-holds barred sort of style and it rubbed off on me.

 

What was your first fight you saw?

I honestly don’t even remember who I saw fighting when I saw my first fight. What I do remember is that I was watching two guys beat the crap out of each other and thinking it was awesome. I never really thought I’d get into the sport myself, but here I am.

What fight camp do you fight out of

I fight out of Gintas CSD. It’s pretty funny, but no-one could actually say the name properly. I heard some try and announce the name before and they completely messed it up. So we decided to just keep it as Gintas CSD. Much easier to remember!

In your last fight against Dino Gambatesa, you gave him a kick he’ll probably never forget. How was that moment for you?

It was awesome, kind of surreal though. Someone mentioned to me that he might have damaged his knee, the way he landed. Sort of like the way Cro Cop landed after Gonzaga hit him. It’s all part of the job, but I realise that it could be me one day and I could be in a worse situation, so I don’t let it get to my head.

What made you throw that kick? It’s rarely ever seen in MMA.

When you’re sparring or fighting, there’s like a language to it. You’re trying to guess your opponents moves and he’s trying to guess mine. Basically, I didn’t really think about it, it just happened. I didn’t even think it was going to knock him out, I thought he’d just be stunned. That’s why when he fell forward; I thought he was going to attack me. Once the referee pushed me off, I realised that it was over.

 

Have you seen any of Giorgio Andrews fight?

I’ve seen two of his fights, but I try not to watch any of my opponents fights. They’re always improving and getting better, so if I expect what I see on tape, then I’m probably going to be surprised. I try to leave the tape-watching to my trainers, so they can pick a game plan for me.

How do you think Andrews is going to attack you and how do you intend to stop it?

Well I know he’s a strong fighter, who likes to take his opponents down to the ground, dish out some heavy ground and pound and then submit them. I think that’s what he usually does in his fights, but as you saw in my fight, if you take me down I’ll get right back up. He’s going to have a hard time keeping me down.

What type of fighters do you admire, because you’ve got a pretty interesting style?

My favourite fighters are obviously my trainer, Fedor Emilieanenko, Anderson Silva. When Shogun is healthy he’s awesome as well

I like them for their different attributes and ferociousness. If you take a bit from all of them, then you can be even better than them. I try to take elements of their game and some of their best qualities and mould it into my own style.

Have you seen any of Giorgio Andrews fight?

I’ve seen two of his fights, but I try not to watch any of my opponents fights. They’re always improving and getting better, so if I expect what I see on tape, then I’m probably going to be surprised. I try to leave the tape-watching to my trainers, so they can pick a game plan for me.

How do you think Andrews is going to attack you and how do you intend to stop it?

Well I know he’s a strong fighter, who likes to take his opponents down to the ground, dish out some heavy ground and pound and then submit them. I think that’s what he usually does in his fights, but as you saw in my fight, if you take me down I’ll get right back up. He’s going to have a hard time keeping me down.

What type of fighters do you admire, because you’ve got a pretty interesting style?

My favourite fighters are obviously my trainer, Fedor Emilieanenko, Anderson Silva. When Shogun is healthy he’s awesome as well

I like them for their different attributes and ferociousness. If you take a bit from all of them, then you can be even better than them. I try to take elements of their game and some of their best qualities and mould it into my own style.

 The UFC and WEC have now merged and I’ve got to ask how you feel about that and whether or not you see yourself there sooner or later?

I’m trying to get into the UFC, that’s no secret. It’s a dream of mine to fight their. It’s crazy as I’ve had some great luck recently. I signed on for my first professional fight, had a great knockout against Dino, then litreally two weeks later, the UFC and WEC merge together. It’s my ultimate goal. Hopefully, with a few more fights under my belt, I can get over there and turn a corner in my career.

Thanks for your time Cory. Is there anyone you’d like to thank?

I’d like to thank my coach and friend Gintas. My training partner’s Paul Steyne and John Wainwright, all my friends that come and support me, my family, friends and Ultimate Challenge.

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