The young lion will lock horns with Malaysian-Kiwi lightweight Ev “E.T.” Ting this Friday, 22 November in the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
For a while, it looked like the two knockout artists would meet in the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix. Unfortunately, that did not come to pass as both men crashed out after respective defeats.
While expectations for this super showdown had simmered, both competitors were still eager to face each other.
A simple social media post was all it took to finally set things into motion.
“He commented on an Instagram story that he would like to face me. I thought it made perfect sense for us to fight each other,” Khan said.
“Among everyone else in the division, I think we both make a good match-up, so I agreed, and not long after, [the matchmakers] sent out the contract.”
As one of the lightweight division’s most prolific knockout artists, Khan has relished the chance to face an athlete with similar skills.
“I like his style, he comes to fight, and he brings it every time just like I do,” he said. “I think it will be a really good test for me.”
Ting has built his career off several highlight-reel finishes and is an elite contender in the lightweight division.
Khan knows Ting is a fan of close-quarter battles, and he is hoping to use the opportunity to test himself at range against his Malaysian-Kiwi rival.
“As a range fighter, I will need to keep range throughout the match because Ting is good at closing the distance,” Khan said.
“I haven’t fully mastered my range, so I feel it will be a good test for me to challenge myself against someone like Ev Ting because he’s one of the best in the division in getting in close range.”
Both Khan and Ting had their journeys through the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix end at the hands of the same opponent – Saygid “Dagi” Guseyn Arslanaliev.
Now, each man is determined to make amends for his premature exit, and the stakes are higher than ever coming into this clash.
“I guess we both have something to prove, but for me, I want to show everyone that I belong right here on this stage with the best,” Khan said.
“Not just to everyone, but also to prove to myself that I am a top-level [mixed martial artist], and I can come back and rise again.”
While resurgence might be the theme for this tilt, Khan also wants to showcase his elite striking – the bedrock upon which he has built a hard-earned reputation as one of the division’s most devastating finishers.
“I don’t just want a one-punch knockout, I want to show my skills all around,” he said.
“I want to have one, two rounds with him. I will still go for the finish. I’m sure I’ll get it, so I am not thinking about that, I am just focused on displaying my skills.”
With the crowd expected to be in his corner, the Singaporean promises he will deliver a show worthy of their support.
“Every time I compete, the fans love it because I bring an action-packed fight – especially this one because my opponent brings it too,” Khan said.
“It’s going to be an exciting war, and someone is going to quit, so you better not miss it.”
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