JACK Marshman insists he is “buzzing” to get back in the octagon at UFC London on what will be a special night for Welsh mixed martial arts, writes Jason Batty.

Shore MMA Academy stablemates Marshman and Jack Shore join Swansea’s John Phillips on The O2 show on March 21.

It is the first time in the UFC’s 25-year history that three Welsh fighters have appeared on the same promotion.

Marshman, 30, makes his long-awaited return to action when he squares off against American Kevin “Trailblazer” Holland (16-5), eight months after losing to rising star Edmen Shahbazyan in Las Vegas.

And the former soldier from Abertillery, who has been plagued by a long-term knee injury, is eager to make up for lost time next month.

“It feels good to be back in the gym,” said the middleweight. “I have had rehab on an old knee injury so it’s nice to feel 100% again.

“I can’t wait to get in there, I’m always game for a fight and always been the same.

“I have always been the guy who loves fighting, so I’m buzzing to get back in there.”

Marshman made his professional debut 10 years ago last week and has fought all over the world, collecting 23 wins along the way.

Since his UFC debut, Marshman has been matched with some the best in the middleweight division, enduring mixed results.

Standing in his way this time is 27-year-old Holland, who has shared the UFC octagon with two of Marshman’s former foes, Phillips and title contender Thiago Silva.

“If you look at all my (UFC) fights, I am fighting all the top guys,” he added. “You look at Shahbazyan, they are talking of him as the next youngest champion.

“I wouldn’t say Kevin Holland is on the same level as the people I have fought. This is a good fight for me and motivates me.

“We both have the same win ratio. I am coming off an RNC (rear naked choke) loss, he is coming off an RNC loss, so it’s a good match-up.”

Fighting back in London brings back some good memories for Marshman as it is where he defeated Phillips last March.

“I love fighting at the O2, the walkout is mental,” he said.

“I have had to travel a lot with my fights but every time I have fought in the UFC in Europe, I have won.

“When I have had to travel in the UFC, and been too far out of my comfort zone, it hasn’t gone to plan, but I am confident and coming for a big win.”

Former paratrooper Marshman will be backed by an army of Welsh fans who are expected to pile into the sold out O2 arena in their droves.

The first Welshman to be signed by the UFC not only takes immense pride sharing the card with his long-time friend and training partner Shore but feels indebted to the Welsh fans who have been cheering him on for years.

“I don’t think there’s many gyms in the UK who have two fighters on the same card,” he added. “Two boys from Abertillery fighting on a UFC card, it’s mental.

“The way the country has got behind us as fighters, especially towards the end of my Cage Warriors days, then the UFC, I couldn’t not represent them and not wear the flag.”