Enriko “The Hurricane” Kehl is a man anew.
The German striker recently changed gyms, and the success he’s been having inside the ONE Championship Circle because of it has been showing.
But he’ll now put the faith he has in his new team to the test when he takes on Davit Kiria in the quarterfinals of the ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix at ONE: FIRST STRIKE on Friday, 15 October.
“Kiria is also one of the best fighters in the world. He’s very dangerous. He has a lot of skills. He has very good kicks because he comes from karate,” Kehl said.
“But as I’ve already said, I’ve changed my team, we’ve worked very hard for him, and we can’t wait to step into the ring again and show everybody who I am.”
Kehl showed glimpses of the man he is when he battled fellow tournament quarterfinalist Chingiz “Chinga” Allazov earlier this year at “ONE on TNT I.” The two kickboxers clashed in a fiery three-round thriller that went down as one of the best fights in ONE Super Series this year.
During the bout, “The Hurricane” displayed his massive punching power – no doubt what earned him the win – and he’ll be looking to catapult his name into the next stage of the tournament with the same techniques.
“Every fighter wants to finish his fight via KO, but we will see what happens – if the game plan works or not,” he said.
“Our target is to win this fight by knockout, for sure. But knockout or not, the most important thing is to win this fight and get to the semifinals to show the world that we are there. Then we can also continue to fight for the title.”
In the tournament, he’ll be thrown into the mix with top-ranked featherweight kickboxers like #4-ranked Sitthichai “Killer Kid” Sitsongpeenong, and Muay Thai fighters like #5-ranked Samy “AK47” Sana, and “The Hurricane” is excited by this prospect.
“It’s the most stacked tournament in the most stacked weight class. The fights are all very hard and every fighter is a favorite,” he said.
“Every fighter is a big name, they’re all World Champions, and no matter who gets to the semifinals or the finals, each fight will be a great fight.”
But this won’t be the first time Kehl competes in the world’s greatest kickboxing tournament. He fought in the 2019 ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix but was eliminated in the first round.
However, two years have elapsed since that time, and Kehl is a changed man who now wants to prove he deserves to be competing among the greatest in the sport.
“It’s a big honor to fight again in the tournament and an honor that ONE believes in me, so I took the chance,” he said. “I hope I can show the world that I’m one of the best fighters.”
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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