“MMA Sister” Lin Heqin hasn’t competed in ONE Championship since 2019, but with the easing of some COVID-19 restrictions, she’s now making her return to the organization this Friday, 30 July.
The Chinese mixed martial artist will look to continue her dominant form at ONE: BATTLEGROUND against fellow atomweight Ritu “The Indian Tigress” Phogat – and she’s no stranger to the Indian Wrestling Champion.
“I learned her story from [‘Dangal’], and it’s a very touching movie. It really moved me,” Lin said.
“After the movie, I cried a lot because we are all fighters. I know she is a very famous wrestler, and her family, they put a lot of hard work into [the sport of] wrestling.”
Phogat took that work ethic and transitioned to mixed martial arts in 2019, where she won her ONE debut and then scored three more wins due to her wrestling.
“MMA Sister” will certainly be wary of that ground game come Friday night
“Ritu has a very obvious advantage. She is a tremendous wrestler. She is really good at takedown techniques, and she has very powerful double-leg takedowns,” the Chinese athlete said.
For her part, Lin’s advantages lie in her potent stand-up game and striking.
The stand-up specialist owns a 14-2-1 MMA record, is riding an 11-fight winning streak, has scored seven knockouts, and has competed in almost four times more fights than Phogat. “I see Ritu’s improvement on her striking power,” Lin said. “She got heavier and heavier striking power after all these fights in ONE Championship, but I have to say, I’m a much more powerful striker than Ritu.”
Moreover, Lin’s been working with another Chinese standout to prepare for her upcoming match.
“I was doing my training camp with Zhang Lipeng, the new signee of ONE Championship,” she said.
“He’s a good guy. We had a lot of fun during the whole training camp. I have learned a lot from him. He showed me a lot of grappling skills and a lot of takedown defense [strategies].”
But if it was up to Lin, she won’t use any of her improving grappling skills against Phogat. She’d rather keep the fight standing and then end it in emphatic fashion.
“I want to knock her out as soon as possible,” Lin said. “That’s my strategy.”
Catch all the action at ONE: BATTLEGROUND this Friday, 30 July, on the ONE Super App or meWATCH at 8:30 p.m. SGT.
Read More From ONE Championship: