Following two beautiful submission victories on the global stage, Mainam will look to make it three in a row – although he would be even happier if this one comes via knockout.
“I will try to finish the match as soon as possible. I would like to finish it in the first round,” he says.
“Going forward, I am looking to use my striking more in my matches.”
Mainam has proven to be a well-rounded fighter in ONE Championship, combining his excellent wrestling base with other facets of mixed martial arts.
The Indian debuted in grand fashion, finishing Khon Sichan via Americana in the first frame. His next match lasted one round longer, but it was dominant nonetheless, as the 24-year-old earned a rear-naked choke victory over ONE Hefei Flyweight Tournament Champion Liu Peng Shuai.
With his confidence now sky-high – and following an excellent training camp at Evolve MMA in Singapore – Mainam can’t wait to strut his wares inside the Circle once more.
“I am really excited for this match because I got this fight at the beginning of the year. I have been working hard since my last match, and I am ready for this challenge. I am geared up for a good performance,” he says.
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Despite his strong self-belief, Mainam doesn’t expect Calim to be a pushover.
The Indonesian star was a Karate Champion in his homeland before finding his way to Yohan “The Ice Man” Mulia Legowo’s gym, where he unlocked more skills and became a formidable mixed martial artist.
“I never take any fight lightly,” Mainam says of his foe.
“Calim debuted in ONE Championship before me. He has represented his country in many fights before this. He is a tough opponent with lots of experience. I will try my best to give a great performance.”
It’s clear that Mainam respects the Indonesian, but that doesn’t mean Calim is without flaws. In fact, the Indian has identified holes that he believes can be exploited in Singapore.
“He has a good understanding of both striking and ground game. He has showcased good clinching, grappling, and ground skills in his matches. He is a well-rounded opponent,” Mainam says.
“[But] he has lost some of his matches by submission. I will try my best to finish him by either submission or striking.”
After his early success in The Home Of Martial Arts, Mainam knows that another impressive performance could lead to even bigger things. And with the support of Evolve MMA, he believes his dreams for the future are attainable.
“I would like to make my country proud this year. I am training with world-class fighters here [at Evolve], and the level of training here is quite different and a notch above the rest,” the Indian says.
“I have trained hard and tried to take myself to the next level. I have improved in my last two matches and I would like to continue doing the same this year, too.”