James Lilley is still buzzing. The Welsh lightweight contender got the news he’ll challenge BKFC lightweight champion Luis Palomino on 23 June at BKFC 45 in Florida.
Lilley, unbeaten in nine fights, earned the opportunity with three impressive wins since joining BKFC last year.
Lilley knocked out Adam Pellerano with a right hand in just 40 seconds, then outpointed Tyler Goodjohn before defeating contender Bobby Taylor by TKO.
BK Island caught up with the fighter known as “Lights Out” to get his thoughts on facing Palomino. Read on for James’ thoughts on the match.
Congratulations on the opportunity. You’ll be facing Luis Palomino for the BKFC Lightweight Title at BKFC 45 on 23 June in Florida. How did it feel to get the call?
James Lilley: I was a bit overwhelmed. Still feels unreal. I know I’ve pulled myself up into this position but a world title still feels like a mythical object.
Luis Palomino is considered one of bare knuckle boxing’s best fighters in the world pound-for-pound. What are your thoughts on facing him?
JL: It’s going to be tough. Of course I’m confident, I don’t think he’s faced anyone like me.
Not only are you a fighter but you’re a poet. What’s more satisfying to you? Writing a great poem or scoring a knockout?
JL: Defo fighting! Poetry satisfies a different part of me but I would say the buzz from fighting can’t be matched
You defeated Tyler Goodjohn by decision at BKFC 27 in London last year. Tyler has posted on social media he thinks he deserved the decision against you. Is a rematch a fight you’d be interested in in the future?
JL: Me and Tyler are on different paths at the moment. He gets the Soto rematch and wins, then he’s back on track and it could be something for the future. (Goodjohn lost a close decision to Antonio Soto III at BKFC 42 earlier this month)
James Lillie, Barrie Jones, Sean George. What is about Wales that produces so many world class bare knuckle fighters?
JL:Haha something in the water mate
Photos Courtesy of Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship