The 28-year-old produced a flawless grappling performance in April, and now he wants the other middleweight contenders to see that he is a threat in every area when he returns to the ring next Saturday, 15 June.
De Ridder will face off against Gilberto “Giba” Galvao in Shanghai, China, and he believes that the experienced Brazilian veteran will offer him the chance to prove he is a dangerous kickboxer as well as a ground game specialist.
Reinier De Ridder puts Fan Rong to sleep with a TIGHT D’Arce choke at 1:51 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
“I think he’ll try to strike with me,” says “The Dutch Knight.”
“I think people still believe I am not a striker at all, so everybody’s game plan will be to strike with me, and that’s fine. It will be good to show some of my striking.”
In his promotional debut, the man from Breda took down Fan Rong and quickly submitted him with a D’Arce choke to extend his professional record to 10-0.
De Ridder wanted to take a step up in competition after that, and his wish was granted when he was offered a match with Galvao, who will bring an impressive 30-6-1 slate to the Baoshan Arena.
De Ridder recognizes the skill and experience that his upcoming rival has in his locker, and he knows it will give him the kind of test that he needs to progress up the middleweight ranks.
“I checked some of his fights, and I know he is 37 years old, so he has been around a long time,” he explains.
“He has a lot of wins and only a few losses, so he has done very well. He is a good opponent – I am glad they gave me this guy. He has a ton of experience, and I know he will be ready when he steps in the ring.”
One of the most notable physical characteristics that will stand out when the pair square off will be the 15-centimeter height advantage De Ridder will have in the ring over his heavily-muscled rival.
The Combat Brothers representative believes he can take advantage of this dynamic – especially when it comes to using his black belt judo skills.
“He is a lot shorter than I am, but I think he is a bit more physical than me,” De Ridder offers.
“It shows in his style as well. He likes to come forward and swing big punches, and then push you to the fence or ropes. I think we’re both in the same boat. He’s been fighting taller guys his whole life, and I’ve been fighting shorter guys my whole life.
“It’s great for throws. Small guys are great to throw, so I hope to throw him around a little bit. I’ve seen in a few of his fights he’s also very open to knees, which is one of my favorite striking techniques, so I hope to hit him with some knees as well.”
De Ridder knows that another strong performance will put him in a great position to challenge for the ONE Middleweight World Title.
If he can execute his game plan and show to his division he can dominate his opponents in whatever range the bout takes place, that opportunity might arrive this year.
“What I’m going to do is take the center of the ring, keep the distance, hit him with strikes, and then take him down and submit him,” he says.