Garreth ‘Soldier Boy’ McLellan (12W-3L) is a South Africa MMA fighter who is currently fighting out of Fightfit Militia in South Africa. He has one fight under his belt in the UFC, a loss via decision to Bartosz Fabinski at UFC Poland.
Garreth made his name fighting in the Extreme African Fighting Championship racking up an impressive 11 wins and 1 loss. This impressive record and his exciting fighting style catapulted him into the UFC where he is looking to get back to winning ways after losing his first UFC fight in Poland.
Garreth is currently the only UFC rostered fighter from South Africa and believes there will soon be more to follow, “For now I am the only South Africa fighter in the UFC, it’s massive for countries fighters to have representation in the UFC, as this gives us the confidence that we can make it to the highest level. It’s been a long journey for us but we have now made that transition and won’t be long before you see more South Africans in the UFC. It’s an amazing feeling, it’s been a long hard road and difficult one but I am here, so now I have to prove that I belong and that I can compete with the best in the world. My journey has only just begun.”
Garreth is looking forward to fighting in Ireland, “I am really excited about Ireland, I have heard a lot about the fans and how they are among the best in the world. I have a job to do, I want to compete and I want to cement myself in the UFC. I want the world to know who Soldierboy is and Ireland is the place to start.”
The distance travelled from South Africa to Poland had no bearing on his fight in Poland and Garreth doesn’t believe it will have any effect on his fight in Ireland, “I don’t think it was the travel, I just didn’t rock up on the night, which is not like me. My performance was poor. I am better than what I showed in Poland and in Ireland I will prove that.”
For Garreth the disappointment of losing his first fight in the UFC is apparent. The mental side of the fight game is something he takes seriously along with the familiarity of his training with Fightfit Militia, “I am still at Fightfit Militia, they are my team and that is where I will stay, all my training will be done in South Africa. During training we fixed mistakes to ensure they won’t happen again. But most of all we fixed the mental side. We have concentrated on being mentally better. It let me down in Poland and it can’t happen again. I was better than what I showed in Poland and the only to prove that will be my performance in Ireland so make no mistake I am coming to win.”
Garreth will be up against the American Bubba Bush in his fight at UFC Dublin and clearly respects his opponent, “He is a big middleweight that looks to be very strong at this weight. He had a very good top game with powerful subs, he’s a very good wrestler with a lot of punching power.”
Being a well-known South African fighter Garreth is willing to put his name to a good cause. Dog fighting appears to be on the rise in South Africa and Garreth took part in a campaign speaking out against it, “Dog fighting is a problem all over the world, they don’t have a voice so I am using mine to stand up and make sure they are heard.”
Between training Garreth spends time with his family and catching up on other sports, “My spare time is spent with my kids and my wife and catching up on other sports like soccer and the Rugby World Cup.”
Soldierboy is a no nonsense fighter in the octagon and doesn’t mince his words out of it either.
“I am coming to fight for my place in the UFC. I am hungry and motivated and I am coming to win. I have some Irish heritgage and will be bringing some celtic madness with me.”
UFC Dublin will be live on UFC FIGHT PASS to audiences in the UK & Ireland. Oct 24th. In addition, fans in Ireland can catch the action from the main card live on free to air channels Setanta Ireland and 3e, while in the UK the event will be broadcast on a delay on Pick.
Programming will start at 8:00 p.m. on 3e with UFC Breakdown followed by all of the action live from 9:00 p.m. on Setanta Ireland and 3e in Ireland and on a delay at 11:00 p.m. on Pick in the UK.