Englishman Jake Hadley has vowed to slay EFC flyweight champion Nkazimulo Zulu and “bring his head back to Birmingham”.
The EFC last week confirmed Hadley (3-0) will challenge Zulu (10-2-1) for the belt in his promotional debut in Cape Town on April 13.
Their contest will serve as the co-main event at EFC 78, which is headlined by JP Buys (6-2) battling Luthando Biko (5-1) for undisputed bantamweight honours at GrandWest Arena.
Zulu, the first South African to compete in the UFC’s Ultimate Fighter Series in 2016, defended his strap a third time by submitting Straight Blast Gym CT standout Gary Joshua (4-1) in a five-round thriller in November last year.
Hadley, meanwhile, rattled off three first-round victories in 2018 under the Golden Ticket Fight Promotions banner, previously finishing Reece Street (0-21) with a rear-naked choke in September.
While Hadley respects Zulu’s pedigree, he insists ‘Zulu Boy”s near-four-year reign at 57kg is coming to an end in Africa’s top fight organisation.
“I’m coming out there to win, there is no doubt in my mind,” Hadley told Front Row MMA.
“I know Zulu Boy has been a great champion for years, but the guy is just not on my level, you know what I mean? Like that kind of sounds disrespectful, but he’s just not on my level. I’m the new breed, he’s the old generation. I’m the new guy coming up, I can do everything and I’m going to stop him.”
The Team Fearless product added: “I’m coming out there to finish. I’m coming out there … I’m coming to win. I’m coming to kill. I’m coming to get my world title and show everyone what I’m about, you know what I mean?”
Asked about his mentality heading into the bout, he said: “You know, this is just the way I am. This is the way I am and that’s what you can expect in Africa, even though I’m coming over to their own hometown … I’m going to come to their hometown and slay their king and come bring his head back with me to Birmingham.”
‘White Kong’ is well aware what defeating Zulu would do for his career.
“It’s the most important fight of me career because now this is going to catapult me now. Because after I win this fight I’m on the brink, if there is still going to be a flyweight division, I’m on the brink of the UFC; I’m on the brink of Bellator. Basically, really, I’m set for the rest of my career because I can fight for other world titles or whatever after I win this title because this is a major promotion. Probably main event, co-main event, broadcast around the world, it’s massive.”