'There's going to be a few other guys who follow my path' - Webb hoping to inspire with historic title win at Cage Warriors 102
James Webb fights to make history next week - and he hopes to inspire a whole generation of martial artists from the region in the process.
Webb, from Colchester, will become the first fighter ever from the eastern region to compete for an MMA world title when he meets Thomas Robertsen for the middleweight crown at Cage Warriors 102 at the O2 in London on March 2.
It is a mouth-watering match-up which pits Webb (5-1), a man on a four-fight winning streak – all by stoppage – against a foe who’s only lost one of his eight pro bouts, winning six of seven inside the distance.
And the 28-year-old knows victory will resonate further than just him and his teams at SBG Swords in Dublin and ZR Team Essex.
“I’m very proud of the fact that I’ve been given this opportunity and I’m the first guy from the eastern region to fight for a world title,” he said. “When I win the belt there’s going to be a few other guys who follow my path – I feel like I’m the blueprint for other fighters.
“I’m not the sort of person who would say I’m inspiring people, but I hope that would be the case.
“Colchester is a small town, but I don’t think it’s about where you’re from, it’s about your work ethic. With the Cage Warriors Academy shows in Colchester and across the country, anyone will get the chance to prove themselves if they earn it.”
Webb, who actually lives in the gym in Dublin while training, has been tipped as a potential superstar by Cage Warriors president Graham Boylan and goes into the fight with huge momentum, having stopped vaunted puncher Jason Radcliffe in his last dust-up at Cage Warriors 99 in his hometown.
But he’s not taken his foot off the pedal in any way as he prepares for the biggest fight of his life.
“I feel like I’m ready to go now,” he said. “I feel like I’ve been ready for two weeks actually. I was pushing myself like a maniac over Christmas, and I’ve come back to SBG and sharpened up - my rounds have been going amazingly, I’ve been doing five five minute rounds with fresh guys and winning those rounds.
“Anything can happen in a fight, but I’m not going in there to get a decision, I’m going in to get him out of there. I will find the opening, whether that be a takedown or a strike, I will find it – and I will finish him.”