ONE Championship: Fil-Indonesian Aziz Calim looks at bright side after loss at ONE: Dreams of Gold
ABS-CBN Sports on Aug 20, 2019 10:04 AM
“I’m even more motivated now to be better, especially on the ground, after my performance last Friday. With the high-level of competition at the moment, I need to be super prepared and skilled - whether it’s on the striking department or the ground,” - Aziz Calim (Photo courtesy of ONE Championship)
No amount of setbacks could ever break the will of Aziz "The Krauser" Calim. It is something that he guaranteed following a short night at ONE: DREAMS OF GOLD.
The Filipino-Indonesian karateka crossed paths with Ryuto "Dragon Boy" Sawada last Friday at the Impact Arena in Bangkok, Thailand, where the latter needed just 69 seconds to get a submission win by rear-naked choke.
Calim said he knew that his Japanese foe was good on the canvas, but admitted that he was still surprised with how good the ONE Warrior Series winner was when they were grappling.
“Heading into this fight, I knew that he’d maximize his strengths against me,” Calim said.
“But on that night, that’s where I saw that he was not just a strong wrestler, he also had great technique with his traps.”
The game plan according to "The Krauser" was to keep the bout on the feet, a strategy he admittedly failed to execute.
Being an established striker, he would have had a better shot at stopping “Dragon Boy” if they were exchanging strikes.
But it is something that he failed to capitalize on as Sawada had his way from the opening bell to the finish.
"The game plan was to keep the fight on the feet and make it a striking battle where I know I had an advantage, but unfortunately the match went to the ground,” Calim revealed.
“I was caught in a rear-naked choke. He was in mount and I was planning to escape but my defense had holes. That’s why he was able to take my neck and execute the choke.”
While the loss was a bitter pill to swallow, the 21-year-old looks on the bright side of it because now he knows the areas where he has to improve.
“Of course, losing is never a good feeling but if you look on the bright side, this match taught me many things, particularly on my skillset as an athlete. It will be a huge help as I go on with my career,” Calim said.
“I’m even more motivated now to be better, especially on the ground, after my performance last Friday. With the high-level of competition at the moment, I need to be super prepared and skilled - whether it’s on the striking department or the ground,” he added.
After that setback, Calim has no plans to rest, saying that the loss merely lit a fire in him.
"I’m planning to go back to the gym as soon as possible, that’s how motivated I am to improve my game."
Catch ONE Championship’s next event, ONE: IMMORTAL TRIUMPH, on 6 September in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. It will be the organization’s first ever all-Super Series event. It will be aired live on the ONE Super App.