Jeremy Miado heads into ONE: SPIRIT OF A WARRIOR on the back of the biggest win of his career.
“The Jaguar” took a dream match against in March – against former ONE Strawweight World Champion Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke.
The odds were stacked against him at ONE: IRON WILL in the Muay Thai legend’s backyard in Bangkok, but the Filipino entered Impact Arena with supreme confidence.
“As soon as I got the news that I was fighting Dejdamrong, I was super excited,” he says.
“There was a lot of pressure, and I definitely felt that immediately, but I was more excited than nervous.
“He was my idol. I had followed his career for a long time, so I really pushed myself to train very hard for that fight, because I knew it was my chance to do something great and prove myself.”“Whatever kind of training I had prior to facing him, I doubled and tripled that. I had to make a statement.”
Miado did more than that as he scored a highlight-reel knockout to give him a career-defining victory and send shockwaves around the martial arts world.
It was the first time Dejdamrong had been knocked out in mixed martial arts competition, and the second-fastest knockout in ONE Championship strawweight history.
The stunning stoppage ended a two-bout losing streak for the 25-year-old and immediately propelled him into contender status in the ONE strawweight division.
“One minute, I was in the toughest fight of my career, and the next minute, I was getting my hand raised in victory,” he remembers.
“I proved to everyone that I belonged in the big leagues, and I proved to myself that I could beat a legend.
“He was one of the biggest names in martial arts — a Muay Thai legend, and a former ONE Strawweight World Champion. I knew if I beat him, my name would absolutely explode.”
When he returned home to the Philippines, Miado was showered with praise for his win.
However, he was also faced with some doubters, who put the win down to a lucky punch. But those comments just fuelled the fire within him.
“It is normal to have people who doubt your career, and I have my fair share of detractors,” he explains.
“I feed off those negative comments and reactions, and I never let it affect my training or my performance negatively. I take it as an opportunity to prove my detractors wrong, and I get more excited to put on a show.
“I do not think my doubters will ever go away, but I take every opportunity to prove them wrong as a challenge I need to overcome.
“An important part of my game is being mentally strong, and I will never let any negative comments affect my career.”
Now Miado has the chance to build on his sensational knockout when he takes on Kritsada “Dream Man” Kongsrichai at ONE: SPIRIT OF A WARRIOR in Yangon on Friday, 29 June.
The Filipino star says he is all set to produce a repeat of his win over Dejdamrong against Kongsrichai and prove that his last victory was no fluke.
“I know if I stick to my guns and work hard in training, I will be ready to do it all over again,” he declares.
“It does not matter who the opponent is. Right now, it is Kongsrichai, and I will be ready for whatever he brings to the table.”