Adrian Mattheis says Indonesians have more courage
Adrian Mattheis is a veteran of ten ONE Championship matches. He lost his first three bouts for the promotion but is currently riding high after posting six victories in his last seven fights.
The Indonesian can consider himself one of the top strawweight contenders and a fourth straight win at ONE: ‘Masters of Destiny’ would only enhance his title credentials. Mattheis is determined to fly the flag for Indonesia with another impressive performance on Friday,
“Indonesians won the War Of Independence, and we got our freedom with only sharpened bamboo. It means that Indonesians have more courage. I am saying this with my utmost confidence, we are at the same level as the top players.”
Mattheis saw his opponent changed at the last minute with ONE Hero Series veteran Li Zhe stepping in. However the 26 year old doesn’t think this will affect the outcome,
“We execute our original game plan but I also have to be fast to spot any opportunities to finish. If I have a chance, I will not miss it.”
Mattheis holds one of the fastest wins in promotional history. But he plans to employ a more patient approach against Zhe,
“If I am able, I want to finish in the second round. Since this is a new opponent, I want to see what he does in the opening stanza, and I use that time to find openings.”
Mattheis hasn’t just won three in a row, he has finished all three bouts in the first or second round. It is the kind of record which appeals to fans and matchmakers alike but he is prepared to go the distance on Friday,
“I have started crossfit and work on my endurance with a 10 kilometer run after each practice session,” he said.
Zhe has fought four times in the ONE Hero Series this year. But this will be his first time on the big show and Mattheis warns he will be in for a totally different type of experience fighting in the 16,000 capacity arena in Kuala Lumpur,
“I am only aware that he has thrived in ONE Hero Series, but this is his debut in a ONE Championship event,” he said.
Zhe’s original opponent was a wrestler and the Indonesian says he hasn’t had to make radical alterations to his training camp or gameplan,
“We had been developing more sprawling techniques (and) our game plan (for original opponent Liu Peng Shuai) included a strategy to stand up and strike. Li Zhe is good with his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, I saw his last bout, so I will not change my entire game plan,” he said.
But while Mattheis won’t guarantee a fast finish he certainly isn’t going to adopt a cautious approach. His strategy tends to consist of combining haymakers with takedowns and he says fans in Malaysia can expect a bit of both,
“I will go all out into battle. I won’t just grapple and take my time in the ring. I will attack, attack and keep attacking.”
At the very least Mattheis will be entering the title conversation with a win on Friday. But the Indonesian has an even simpler point he hopes to prove at ONE: ‘Masters of Destiny’,
“Indonesia has great athletes. We are capable of displaying great performances.”