Shine of the Tyne; Is Alex Enlund UK MMA’s Best Kept Secret?
With a record of 10 -2 with 9 of these wins by submission in the first round and after three consecutive wins by RNC in the renowned Cagewarriors promotion it would be fair to say Alex Enlund is a rising star in MMA; but add in the fact he is young, smart, highly technical, certainly big in his 145lb weight class and simply slick in the cage then is there a story no one has yet told about what could simply be one of Britain’s most exciting prospects since Brad Pickett? No one looking at Alex in the street would imagine he was close to the top of one of the world’s top MMA promotions; tall, skinny, maybe even slightly geeky most people would probably mistake him for a University student his backpack more likely to contain a bunch lecture papers than a gum shield and set of gloves but Alex’s technical study is every bit as deep as your typical final year student and could well be looking to get honours in MMA that would eclipse many a degree at one of the North East’s many fine universities. “Starting to train MMA was a huge coincidence, meeting my first coach as I started work in a bar while attending university. Within 6 month of training twice per week I was to have my first amateur fight.” I met Alex back in 2007 whilst helping my long term sparring partner Bryan Moore prepare for a fight in a gym in South Shields. Alex was very young, a little out spoken in a strangely inoffensive way, even back then he was very sure about how he wanted to conduct his training; I’d seen many guys, even experienced fighters borrowing their technique from anyone they could find but even back then Alex had a different approach, a belief in his own path that few people truly possess. Looking back I find myself wondering how GSP might have been in a small gym at 20 years old before anyone ever knew his name. "When I look at my life I never expected to be where I am today, 19 years old attending university studying sports science having never really excelled at anything. I knew I was probably going to be a PE teacher never did I think that I would be a professional MMA fighter with aspirations of being a world champion." Whilst many names have come and gone on the UK scene with high hopes and maybe hyped hopes having known Alex for the best part of a decade its maybe easy to see why he’s escaped the notice of the limelight; First and foremost Alex Enlund is a martial artist, a modern one but all the same a martial artist whose first instinct is to be an expert in his field. Detail many would struggle to consider is Alex’s forte and the obsession with technical detail has been the mark of many a past sports champion regardless of the discipline. "When I look at why I like to fight it doesn't come down to the bright lights or the common miss assumption that you get a lot money for being a MMA star I often get embarrassed when people bring up my fights. Something deeper inside me drives me and motivates me into wanting to succeed at MMA. Having almost stopped fighting all together at one point it's a personal need to achieve something that takes me to the gym every day. Growing up having never been better than average I feel I have now found my calling..." Calling indeed, Alex Enlund might well be the awkward star that cannot avoid the lights much longer with Cagewarriors Channel 4 television deal about to set UK MMA on fire which in turn will almost certainly mean other opportunities knocking for its best fighters. At 27 a BJJ Brown Belt under Leo Negao, a deep thinker about technique, strategy and every aspect of his training, career and conduct Alex Enlund is a modern breed of MMA fighter, one that will soon draw comparison with guys such as Rory MacDonald or Ben Henderson. Alex is keeping his powder dry but like it or not the secrets out.