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Davit Kiria will step into the ONE Championship Circle and take part in the toughest kickboxing tournament of his storied career this Friday, 15 October.
“It’s a really big opportunity,” Kiria said. “I have to be honest, I’m very happy to be one of the eight men in the Grand Prix. It’s a really big thing in my life, in my fight career.
“All the preparation is going very well. I’m really focused, and I will put all my energy to use in this tournament.”
And he’ll need to do just that. In Kehl, he’s going to face a terrifying striker who likes to throw leather from bell to bell. However, Kiria isn’t letting such thoughts creep into his mind. Instead, he’s choosing to focus on the areas he can capitalize on.
“I don’t think about his advantages. I think about his weaknesses because this is the main thing that will bring me success. But I know he’s working hard. He’s dreaming hard,” Kiria said.
“He wants to win, like me, and that’s what makes this fight great. But of course, I have to defend myself from Kehl. He’s a good puncher. He’s a good kicker.”
That being said, Kiria believes his advantages lie in his in-ring mentality and his willingness to grind down the men standing across from him.
“I always feel confident in myself,” he said. “And I will always think that I’m better than everyone. Without this mindset, you cannot succeed, you cannot be at the top level – where I am now.
“I believe in myself and my advantage is in my experience. My advantage is my hard work. I’m working more than 100 percent, and I’m investing my soul into this fight. I will use all my advantages and all my experience to win this fight.
“My strategy is to catch him, and if my strategy works, then I’ll catch him,” Kiria added. “But because the fight is part of the future, I cannot say exactly how I will win. But my goal is to win, and it will happen for sure.
“We will see in the cage. But I will do what I always do. I will use my mind and, as I said, my experience. Everybody has some weaknesses, and that’s the point – that I have to use his weakness to win this fight.”
Beating Kehl will advance him to the semifinals of the greatest kickboxing tournament in history. On top of that, Kiria believes it will also help to justify the choices and sacrifices he has made to get where he is.
“I chose this sport. I chose martial arts – kickboxing. And if I’m in this business, if I’m in this life, I want to be the best. And if I want to be the best, then I have to win this tournament because this tournament is the biggest tournament on the planet today,” Kiria said.
“Everybody in it is the best. They are the top eight fighters on the planet, so winning this tournament means everything to me because I’ve dedicated my life to this sport.”
Catch all the action at ONE: FIRST STRIKE on the ONE Super App or on meWATCH at 8:30 p.m. SGT on Friday, 15 October.
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