‘I Will Make The Stadium Roar’ – Eko Roni Saputra Aims To Continue Epic Run Against Danny Kingad
Following a career-best victory in his last outing, Eko Roni Saputra will finally get to face one of the flyweight MMA division’s top dogs on Friday, February 24.
The Indonesian wrestling sensation submitted Yodkaikaew Fairtex last October to earn a shot at #3-ranked contender Danny Kingad, and he can’t wait to throw down at ONE Fight Night 7: Lineker vs. Andrade II on Prime Video.
Some have doubted Saputra during his meteoric rise – including his most recent opponent – but that’s only given him more motivation to succeed.
Now riding a dominant seven-fight winning streak, the 31-year-old is thrilled to be proving himself against skilled rivals on the global stage of martial arts.
He said of his victory over Yodkaikaew:
“I was very satisfied with the fight because before that, he made a statement that I was not worthy to play with the big boys. It became a particular challenge for me, [until finally] I showed that he was nothing.”
The first-round heel hook submission showed that Saputra is capable of pushing toward the flyweight’s upper echelon, and the reward is exactly what he wanted.
The Evolve representative now has a chance to test himself against one of the most highly regarded competitors in his division who’s already gone up against many of the biggest names.
Win or lose, Saputra wants to make a strong impression, but he also expects to succeed and showcase the strength of his nation in the process.
“I wanted to open this first fight of the year in a spectacular way. I want to give my best and fight with my maximum abilities, especially for Indonesia. I want to prove that Indonesian MMA is bigger than people think and that the world should respect it.
“If I lose [against a] top-five opponent, it means that I am not yet worthy to be there, right? This is why I want to prove that I belong there, and I will keep challenging all other fighters above me.”
Eko Roni Saputra Not Overlooking Danny Kingad
Eko Roni Saputra’s seven-fight winning streak has come with an unbelievable seven first-round finishes, but the humble Indonesian is not letting it go to his head.
He knows that Danny Kingad is another step up and that he must take the Filipino phenom seriously. Hailing from Team Lakay with solid striking credentials, “The King” will offer up a dangerous threat on the feet.
That will give Saputra a chance to test his ever-improving striking, but above all, the wrestling specialist will be ready to switch gears and use whatever skills are necessary.
“I do not want to be too ambitious. I will try my best, train my best, and prepare the best game for this next one.
“If I am overconfident about beating Kingad, it means I would be going too far ahead. I will only fight with our game plan. I do want to play with some striking. However, if I see that there is a chance to execute a good takedown, I’ll take it. I will follow the flow of the fight.
“We don’t know what will happen in the Circle. If we can get an easy takedown, and we will finish, why do we need to take a longer road?”
While he respects his opponent’s striking, Saputra still thinks Kingad should be wary of taking him lightly if they end up trading blows on the feet.
Westling will always be his foundation, but the rising star thinks he can shock his foe and continue his streak in a way that few expect.
“I think Danny will not know much about my game. He might only think that I am strong on the ground. That is why I will give Danny a big surprise.
“There are still lots of weapons in my arsenal. In short, I will make the stadium roar with my surprises. Moreover, I also wanted to prove that my striking is on a par with his.”