The Indian wushu champion will return to action this Friday, 3 May in a strawweight bout with Adrian “Papua Badboy” Mattheis that promises non-stop action from the first bell at the Istora Senayan in Jakarta, Indonesia.
India's Himanshu Kaushik kicks off ONE: HERO’S ASCENT with a stunning knockout of Egi Rozten at 3:33 of Round 1! ????????Watch the full event LIVE & FREE on the ONE Super App ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast
Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, January 25, 2019
Kaushik is riding high after he scored his first win in The Home Of Martial Arts in January at ONE: HERO’S ASCENT.
The 26-year-old put on the performance of his career to dominate Indonesia’s Egi Rozten is every phase of the match before he unleashed some powerful ground and pound to seal the first-round knockout.
The finish prompted euphoric celebrations from the Delhi native, as well as his fans back home.
“It was the first knockout win by any Indian on the global stage of ONE Championship, so it was a huge success for me and Indian mixed martial arts as well,” Kaushik says.
“That win gives me more confidence than anything.”
The Crossfit Fitness Academy representative’s reward for that success was a date with Mattheis – a dangerous Indonesian who has more wins (7) and finishes (6) than any other strawweight on the global stage for martial arts.
“Papua Badboy” has shown his ability to win by submission, but it is undoubtedly his heavy hands that pose the most danger, but Kaushik believes his technical skills honed through years of wushu training can overcome that raw power.
And if the Indian can land on his rival, he also has plenty of force in his fists to bring about a finish.
“Adrian Mattheis is a very experienced fighter with wins by striking and grappling,” he says.
“I watched all of his fights, and I am impressed by his fighting skills. He makes good game plans according to his opponent, but it looks like he is a little weak in stand-up, so I will strike with him.
“He has more power in his hands than me, but the match will go in my favor by TKO in the second round.”
Mattheis will have the advantage of competing in his hometown, but Kaushik does not believe that will have any bearing on the result of their match-up.
Fueled by his comprehensive victory over another Indonesian who was riding a two-bout winning streak, the Indian hero is supremely confident.
“It is very good for him that he has good support but I don’t care about that. I am ready in all ways,” Kaushik adds.
“After my first win in ONE, I am very confident and I am very excited to get another victory. I want to prove that India has the best mixed martial artists.
“I want to say him, ‘Good luck for this match, and let’s give a good fight to our ONE fans around the world.'”
One final motivating factor for Kaushik is the chance to show his skills to a wider audience in his homeland.
A new broadcasting deal will see ONE events shown on Star Sports so more of his countrymen than ever before will have the chance to cheer him on from home, and that can only be a positive thing for his career.
“I am very happy and thankful to ONE and Star Sports for this deal. All Indian fans are very happy about it, and now more people will know about ONE in India,” he explains.
“I thought very few people in India loved mixed martial arts but I was wrong. After this win, I got attention, followers, respect, love, and fame.
“I got an invitation to do a TED Talk, people want to take selfies with me, every day I meet new fans of mine, and now I have started to live my dream life. Puja [Tomar] is getting the same response after her first win [in ONE].”
Kaushik adds that another win will surely help the growth of mixed martial arts among the world’s second-largest population, and ahead of his bout at the Istora Senayan, he has a message to every one of his compatriots whose positivity is pushing him forward.
“[I want to] thank Indian fans so much for all their love and respect for my first win. I am very thankful to them for supporting me, and I will make India proud again in this bout.”