Anatoly Malykhin and Reinier de Ridder went head to head ahead of their middleweight title fight in Qatar on Friday. The two men have fought before but never at middleweight.

In the ONE 166 main event Malykhin is challenging de Ridder for his middleweight strap. The Russian sounded extremely confident,

“I’m gonna go and get my third belt. I’m gonna knock him out the same way I did before.”

Whole year

The last time these two men fought Malykhin won by knockout at ONE Fight Night 5. That loss cost de Ridder his light heavyweight title but the Dutchman has had a whole year to prepare and pledged to put on a better showing second time around,

“He beat me last time, he hurt me. I’ve got a year to prepare for this, I grinded every single day, and I’m ready to showcase my skills this time.”


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Third belt

De Ridder does not use social media at all so is totally oblivious to Malykhin’s online antics. But while the Dutchman isn’t letting his opponent wind him up he admits to having been over confident ahead of the first fight,

“I’m planning to be a bit more humble this time. I believe I have the skills to finish him.”

‘Humble’ is not an adjective that would ever be used to describe Malykhin. He already holds the heavyweight and light heavyweight belts and is confident he will be able to win a historic third strap on Friday.

“Three-belt time, three-belt time. Look at this right hand — this is gonna knock him back out to sleep this Friday.”