The red dust begins to settle as another long day comes to an end. The heat is still blistering, and all day it has been a repetitious process of wiping sweat away from the brow and brushing away flies.

Welcome to the true “Outback.”

The state of Western Australia is the mining mecca of Australia. Men and women join the highly paid workforce here wherein a good, hard-earned day’s work comes at the expense of a “fly in, fly out” schedule where most employees will find themselves away from family for days and weeks at a time.

Benny Alloway traded in his fingerless gloves for a set of heavy-duty work gloves. He traded in his spacious Gold Coast home for a tiny dwelling that fits a bed, a small television and his work essentials. Whilst some things may have been sacrificed in order to earn his living, there was still something that he couldn’t trade off.

Alloway is a fighter.

“I really just wanted to take a bit of a break away from MMA,” Alloway explained in an exclusive interview with The MMA Corner. “Coming off those two losses was tough, and I knew that I needed to get some focus back in my life if I was going to get in and fight at the top again. Coming out here [to Perth] and just working really made me realize that I wanted to give it another crack. There are long hours out here and it is tough being away from my family, but we do what we gotta do to make things work.

“The big thing for me was I needed to get away to get my passion back for the sport. Losing once sucks. Losing twice makes you wonder what you’re doing. I know what it’s like to lose two fights in a row, and I don’t want to ever find out what it’s like to lose a third. Getting out of the scene altogether and working a hard job really opened my eyes. I know I have the passion back, and I know that when I get in there again everyone else will see it too.”

Being away from his home and usual gym has meant that Alloway has needed to improvise in the lead-up to his return to the cage. He has been based on-site at his job, which has meant that traveling to a gym isn’t an option. Instead, he has made the most of the people and facilities around him.

“It’s hard work, because it’s not what I am used to,” he admitted. “The training has worked out well, though. It’s a lot of weights and conditioning. There are a couple guys that train in jiu-jitsu, and there’s a good mix of blue belts and also a purple belt. There is also a guy who has competed in boxing, so it hasn’t been too bad. When I do get the chance to head home [to Gold Coast], I’ll get some sparring in, but most of my camp will be in Perth leading up to the fight.”

Alloway was once starring in an acclaimed reality television series. Now, he’s just another face in the crowd. That could be seen as a difficult adjustment for anybody to go through. In his new occupation, Alloway is lucky to not only have the support of his employer, but also those around him. They all don the same uniform, and sometimes he will find himself reminded that in this realm, he’s just a guy that’s there to do a job.

“My younger brother is my boss, so it works out pretty well,” Alloway said. “He is really flexible with the training and fighting and everything, so it’s really good. The only thing that sucks a little bit is if there’s a shitty job to do he usually lumps me with it so he can have a bit of a laugh [laughs]. It’s all good, though. It’s good to have a boss who supports what I want to do.”

Alloway makes his return to action with Cage Warriors at The Helix in Dublin, Ireland, on March 1. He faces 38-fight veteran Jack “The Stone” Mason. Mason heads into the fight riding a two-fight winning streak and will be a tough task for Alloway, who is keen to impress in his first outing back under the Cage Warriors banner.

“I know that I have to go in there and win and I have to finish him,” he admitted. “I want to get a run at the Cage Warriors title. I want to be fighting the best fighters in the world, and I know that Cage Warriors is home to some of the best talent outside of the UFC. Cage Warriors have given me the chance to fight internationally again, and I am going to make sure that they are impressed.

“There isn’t as much pressure for me anymore, and I know I can go in and just think about the fight. Yeah, I know that if I want to make something of this I need to win this fight, but I also know that at the end of the day, if I don’t get the win, I’ve got something else. I’m really just looking forward to fighting for the sake of fighting and not because it’s a job.”

A change in lifestyle can be paramount in a fighter seeing success in their professional career. Whether it’s blood, sweat or tears that are shed inside The Helix for his return to action, come the weeks after, Alloway will return to the scorching sun of Western Australia where he will continue to work towards a fight instead of fighting for work.

Benny would like to thank PUMMA, Marc Fiore and his family. Follow Alloway on Twitter: @bennyblancomma

About The Author

Staff Writer, Australia

Located in Queanbeyan, New South Wales, Neil Rooke has been writing about the sport of MMA since 2011. In the past, Neil has written for Cage Junkies and has written for Fight! Magazine as well as Fist! Fight Magazine. Neil is also a regular contributor to Fight! Magazine Australia and Yahoo! Sports Singapore.