Nieky “The Natural” Holzken (90-14, 1 NC) enters ONE Championship as one of the most complete strikers in combat sports.
The Dutch athlete will return to compete under kickboxing rules at ONE: WARRIOR’S DREAM on Saturday, 17 November following his successful campaign in the world of professional boxing.
In his ONE Super Series debut against Cosmo “Good Boy” Alexandre (69-18-1) at the Stadium Istora in Jakarta, Indonesia, he will be ready to utilize all of the tools in his arsenal.
“This is a very good chance for me,” says the 34-year-old from Helmond, Netherlands. “ONE is a fast-growing organization that I wanted to be a part of.”
While the world’s largest martial arts organization is new territory for “The Natural,” his opponent is a familiar one.
He and Alexandre first met back in May 2010 in Amsterdam, and it was the Dutchman who took the nod in their original encounter. He scored a first-round knockdown with a left hook, which set him up for a decision victory.
A lot has happened for both men in the eight years that have passed – they have each evolved as martial artists – and Holzken knows from their previous meeting that the Brazilian will be a tough test.
However, he also believes he knows how to defeat him again.
“He is a good fighter,” the Glory and WFCA World Kickboxing Champion explains. “His knees are good, but I think his boxing is a weakness.”
Holkzen has taken on the best strikers from around the globe in kickboxing, but recently switched his focus to boxing, amassing a 14-1 record in the sweet science, so his hands are honed to exploit any gaps in his opponent’s defense.
He is also eager to make an impression in his first assignment in The Home Of Martial Arts, before going on to make a run at a World Title to add to his collection of belts.
“To win against a good opponent will be great,” he says. “I will become World Champion at ONE.”
With the striking divisions being bolstered by the top talent from the worlds of kickboxing and Muay Thai at every ONE event, it is an exciting time for fans and athletes alike.
The volume of world-class operators now competing in ONE Super Series means the promotion’s titles have quickly become the most sought-after prizes in combat sports.
“The Natural” feels like an emphatic victory in Jakarta will be his fast-track to top contendership, so his plan is simple.
“It will be a KO win for me – you will see on 17 November,” he says.