The last time Ben Askren headlined an event in Manila, things didn’t go according to plan. What looked set to be a close and competitive fight with Luis Santos came to an abrupt and premature end when the Brazilian was unable to continue after a first-round eye poke.
It was a major disappointment for the Filipino fans who were getting their first glimpse at arguably the world’s best welterweight. Askren has a chance to make some amends this Friday (April 15, 2016) when he defends his belt against Nikolay Aleksakhin in the exact same arena.
The American’s title bout against the Russian headlines ONE: “Global Rivals” and Askren is determined to show the Manila audience exactly what he is capable of.
“I am very excited to be fighting in Manila again. The fans in Manila have always been truly amazing and there’s a real fight culture there I do enjoy fighting there and I feel like I owe the fans a good show after what happened the last time.”
Much has been made of how this fight will pit the Combat Sambo of the Russian against the wrestling of the U.S. Olympian and two time NCAA Division-1 champion but the American doesn’t expect Aleksakhin to pose him many problems.
“I think that he is physically strong and tough, but I think his style is limited in what he can do and he is not very dynamic. I think his style will play right into my game plan.”
The “no contest” against Santos was followed by an aborted rematch with the Brazilian. It means he hasn’t completed a fight since 2014 and will be looking to make up for lost time this year.
“I better get moving then! I looking to retain my title and I am coming for that ‘W’.”
The Santos non-finish is the closest thing to ….View full article
Source:: mma mania