Rodtang Jitmuangnon‘s special rules super-fight versus Demetrious Johnson is the talk of the martial arts world, and the Muay Thai superstar can’t wait to test himself against the MMA icon this Saturday, 26 March.
The pair will alternate between their chosen sports for four rounds in the co-main event of ONE X, and like everyone else, Rodtang is curious to see how the matchup plays out.
But no matter what happens, the reigning ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Champion has committed everything to this fight so he can give his best performance at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
The Thai striker said:
“I’ve never practiced this hard. I enjoy training, but watching my opponent’s videos made me nervous. What if I have to deal with his speed? How do I survive? Because if DJ can take his opponent down [in the MMA rounds], he will move and change positions all the time.
“I can’t answer [whether I’ll be able to deal with his grappling] because I have no experience in this sport really. But what I can answer is I won’t give up easily. If you can get me on the ground, you have to beat me until I die or choke me to sleep, otherwise I will not give up.”
“The Iron Man” is approaching this battle as a realist – but certainly not a defeatist.
He knows the contest will open in his favor under Muay Thai rules, giving him three minutes to try and win or slow down Johnson for the MMA stanza that follows.
With this in mind, Rodtang plans on accumulating damage early, and he fired back at DJ’s assertion that he would ultimately score a submission.
The 24-year-old said:
“You said you would submit me in the second round, huh? Why don’t you think that you might have a broken leg, a fractured rib, or a cut in your eyebrow in the first round? Or are you planning to run away in the first round? Don’t forget that you have to pass my Muay Thai in round one first.
“Like I said, if he can survive my Muay Thai, he needs to submit me in round two. Otherwise, he will be out of luck. I think I am going to beat him until he runs out of gas in the first round, so he doesn’t have strength left to hurt me in the second round.”
Rodtang Praises Stamp Fairtex Before World Title Challenge
Stamp will challenge Angela Lee for the ONE Women’s Atomweight World Title in the ONE X main event, and “The Iron Man” shared his insider’s view on her chances.
“For this fight, Stamp is determined and trained very hard. She practices even harder than me. If I kick the sandbag for nine rounds, she will do 10. She is ready for any situation. She is very focused on it.”
For his part, Rodtang believes that Stamp’s expanding MMA skill set and momentum from winning the ONE Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix has put her in a great position to unseat the division’s current ruler.
He thinks the former kickboxing and Muay Thai queen can fend off Lee’s grappling prowess and secure a victory with her elite striking.
“I think if Stamp uses punching and kicking techniques, Angela Lee will be in trouble. Angela took a break for a long time from her pregnancy. If Stamp can manage to punch her like Xiong Jing Nan did, Angela will have no chance, no matter how good her ground game is.
“I think Stamp is coming in at her peak, and the rest depends on luck.”