Craig Coakley Interview: ‘I never thought I’d get this far this quick’

Craig Coakley against Jeremy Nkoa Zoa (61kg) on March 26 at Cage Kings has the potential to be the fight of the night in Tallaght.

Ireland vs France
Lionheart Gym vs Nasser K Gym.

Ireland’s number one ranked super-featherweight Muay Thai fighter Craig Coakley spoke to Fightstore Media ahead of the clash.

“Cage Kings is a great promotion. They are doing great things, hopefully they keep it up and they get me on more big fights.

“I have an aggressive style but I like to keep my range a good bit, pick my shots, I always come to fight and come forward, but controlled aggression,” commented Coakley.

Although his opponent fights out of the reputable Nasser K Gym in Lyon, Coakley stated that “he doesn’t do well with too much pressure” from the one bout he has watched of the Frenchman.

By looking at Coakley today you would never guess the initial reason why he got involved in combat sports.

“I was fat,” he laughed. “I went down to lose a bit of weight that was about it. Then I fell in love with striking. I’ve always wanted to fight but I never thought I’d get this far this quick. But now I know I will go far.”

Already he has achieved significant feats.

In 2015 the Dubliner grabbed people’s attention by accumulating an undefeated record comprising of four stoppage victories.

He recalled: “I fought three very high level Irish opponents and one Dutch fighter. Three of them were first round (finishes), one was an elbow, one was a head kick, one was a body shot, it’s not just one shot I’m good with, I’m good everywhere.”

Coakley will be competing in a cage at the end of the month and he articulately explained the contrast between the cage and the ring.

“It’s very different in my opinion. You have a lot more space in the cage but if you get trapped against it it’s a lot more closed. Against the ropes you can lean on (them) and work off but you’ve nowhere to go off the cage so you’ve to keep your back off it. But when you’re in the centre you have a lot more room to move and I like moving and getting people caught up against that cage and working shots off,” he said.

For any youngster hoping to be become a fighter, Coakley had this word of advice.

“Do what you love. Don’t do it because everyone else is doing it. If you genuinely like fighting and want to fight do it.”

Due to his interest in the combat scene worldwide, we asked Coakley for a prediction if Conor McGregor and Jose Aldo had a rematch.

He said this: “Conor’s too strong, too fast, his movements too good for Jose. Jose plots forward, he has that Thai style where he is stationary and won’t move much but after seeing what happened with Diaz he might just try to take him down but if Conor creates the angles and takes his shots he can do it again.”

Craig Coakley Interview: 'I never thought I'd get this far this quick'

Craig Coakley (Ireland) v Jeremy Nkoa Zoa (France), Cage Kings Dublin, Official Poster

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