Davit Kiria will seek to make it third time lucky when he takes on #3 ranked Sittichai Sitsongpeenong at ONE: ‘Only the Brave’ on Friday. A place in the final of the featherweight kickboxing Grand Prix is on the line but the Georgian has already lost twice to the Thai.

He knows he’ll need to pull something special out of the bag if he wants to get the job done this time,

“I have to do something new and unexpected, give him some surprises if I want to win this fight. I have to do something special. I’ll do my best to show up in the cage and to prove that I’m one of the best,” he said.

Scary opponent

The pair first met at Glory in 2015. Sitthichai won via knockout after unleashing a decisive knee to the body in the second round. They faced each other in the same promotion a year later with Sitthichai getting the nod from the judges.

However the Thai believes his opposite number has improved massively since they last fought and described him as a ‘scary opponent’.

Kiria is flattered, and responded by saying,

“This is how he thinks and this is how he sees me. It’s true that I’ve worked a lot. I improve a lot. I developed. (So) thanks for this kind of comment.”

Biggest dream

The Zugdidi-born fighter is a former champion in both Glory and Kunlun and this will be his third outing in ONE Championship. His last encounter came in the quarter final against Enriko Kehl, and the 33 year old says he’s motivated by the prospect of finally beating an old adversary and securing a place in the Grand Prix final,

“I’m not going to talk about my fight plans, but I know why I’m here and what I want. I have an extra motivation and a good reason for it. I want to win this tournament. It’s my biggest dream and my biggest plan. And I also have a rematch so I think these two reasons will help me to get the victory.”