Nearly two years after his last mixed martial arts contest, Tom Aspinall is set to return to the cage after a brief stint in the world of professional boxing.
Aspinall (5-2), who trains out of Team Kaobon, will fight Brazilian Tiago Cardoso on Sunday, May 6 at Fusion Liverpool. The event will be co-promoted by HAMMA and MASDA.
He made his exit from MMA in late 2016 after struggling to find regular competition. Aside from this, Aspinall had grown tired of the politics attached to UKMMA, a topic which he discussed at length in an interview with 4c Sports Media.
25-year-old Aspinall decided to pursue a career in pro boxing, where he signed with management company MTK Global and even spent some time training with renowned coach, Peter Fury.
Licensed by the British Boxing Board of Control, Atherton’s Aspinall made his in-ring debut last June, where he stopped Tamas Bajzath inside of a round.
It was a solid start for Aspinall in boxing, but the allurement of MMA has since tempted his return to a less restrictive sport.
“My return to MMA is because I think boxing is too limited in terms of rules, even though I really like the sport of boxing, I love MMA and the feeling that anything can happen at any time,” Aspinall told DreySports.
Will the former BAMMA and FCC fighter’s return to the cage close the door on his pro boxing career? Aspinall refutes that claim.
He said: “I’m not closing the door on either really. My focus is on MMA as now I have sparred at the very top level in different areas, I know I have what it takes to be world champion at MMA.”
Team Koabon teammate and coach, Mike Grundy, also has high hopes for Tom’s MMA homecoming.
“Tom’s the fastest heavyweight I have seen, he’s going to be a struggle for any heavyweight in the world. I’m looking forward to seeing him back in the cage,” Grundy told DreySports.
As for Aspinall’s opponent, Cardoso is an 11-fight veteran, but he has only won one fight from his last five.
Regardless of his opponent’s stature, the Koabon prodigy has the potential to return his name to relevance, especially with such a scarcity of heavyweights in the UK.