On May 21, in Milan’s Palasesto, ‘The Beautiful One’, Ché Mills (16-8-0,2NC) makes his return to MMA and the welterweight division. Facing him will be Italian prospect Roberto ‘Supernatural’ Rigamonti (4-2-1) on the Venator Fighting Championship 3 card.
Incidentally, this is on the same card that fellow Brit Luke Barnatt was slated to meet Jason ‘Mayhem’ Miller…
Ché was good enough to take a break from his busy training schedule to give us some of his time.
“First of all, I got injured after the Marshman fight [at Cage Warriors 72 in September, 2014],” Ché explained. He’d required corrective surgery after rupturing an achilles tendon in training.
“So I was pretty much out of it then after the injury. I’ve just taken my time to try and come back stronger. I was only completely out of training for a few months, but since then I have been trying to get back to where I was before. I just wanted to take a little time out to make sure that I got everything back in order.”
Mills wasn’t completely static during 2015 taking on, and winning, a K1 fight in Gloucester’s under-the-radar event Gloucester Kombat – run jointly by Team Extreme’s Alan Carter and Trojan Free fighter’s Paul Sutherland. Mills beat Artur Saladik by way of unanimous decision in a needle filled bout.
“I’m not sure how the Venator fight came about to be honest. I don’t ask too many questions.
Matt [Mills’ manager Matt Walton] just kind of approached me with it and I accepted. That was pretty much it. This isn’t a multi fight deal, it’s is a one-fight deal.”
“I don’t know a lot about my opponent really, just the usual. I think he likes to brawl a little bit. He’s got heavy heavy punches, but I haven’t seen a lot of kicks or anything from him. So yeah, he’s just an all-round tough guy, I guess”.
Ché has gone from welterweight to middleweight and then back down welterweight in his career, and so I asked him if he had come back down to 170lbs specifically for this fight, or is it his natural hunting ground.
“Yes. It’s my true home. I mean, I just realised that I just wasn’t naturally big enough to be a middleweight. At the time, I was in the gym three times a week lifting heavy, I was eating a lot more just trying to compete at that weight while everyone else was just naturally bigger.”
“Yeah, I should make weight quite comfortably again this time”.
One of the coolest cucumbers in the sport surely has some kind of mind training doesn’t he? I’ve not seen Mills flustered in or out of combat. What is his secret?
“It’s just natural, I guess.”
“I mean, I wasn’t always like it. As a kid I was quite hyper. I was one of those kids that couldn’t sit still and then, by about sixteen or seventeen, I just turned around and went completely the other way and became totally chilled out. It was a weird transition.”
“In a sense I regard this fight as a comeback, but more in a personal kind of comeback than an out of competition and no one’s seen me kind of comeback. I think I have improved so much since the injury. It made me readjust and things like that. It made me reassess. It wasn’t a good thing, but I made it into a good thing as best as I could. I’m training now a lot better and a lot smarter. I think I’m now an all-round better fighter.”
We look forward to seeing Ché Mills return.
Occasional contributor. Full time fuckwit. Has car, will travel… Sometimes.