Rahul Raju: I Will Break Amir Khan At ONE: Reign Of Dynasties
On October 9th at ONE: Reign Of Dynasties, Rahul Raju will look to silence his doubters as he faces Amir Khan. He had a rough start to his ONE career, losing his first three fights in 2018. With a 7-4 record in mixed martial arts, ‘The Kerala Crusher’ has recently gone on a two-fight winning streak. He most recently choked out Furqan Cheema at ONE: Edge Of Greatness in November last year.
Going into his first fight of 2020, Raju will look to continue his winning streak. Furthermore, by extending the streak, he hopes it will stop the fans from calling him an underdog. Speaking to ONE Championship, Rahul said he believes his fight with Khan will be ‘easy work’.
“I will break him as soon as possible,” said Raju. “People think that I am the underdog, but I think it will be easy work for me.”
“I’m Going To Mix It Up”
Raju is primarily a grappler who holds a brown belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu. These grappling skills have led him to back-to-back submission victories over Richard Corminal and the aforementioned Cheema. He has also been improving his striking at the Juggernaut Fight Club in Singapore, where he trains. Come fight night, ‘The Kerala Crusher’ will look to bring a variety of styles to the ONE Circle.
“I am going to mix it up,” Raju said. “I am going to push him from the start until he gives up – until I finish him. I think I’ll break him by the second round. Even if it goes on for three rounds, I am ready for it.”
Grappling vs Striking
While Khan has experienced his fair share of success in ONE, he has recently been on a downturn. The Singapore native has gone 1-4 in his last five fights, getting finished three times. However, he is still known for his knockout power. Raju believes he can exploit the Evolve MMA representative’s lack of a grappling game.
“Khan’s strength is his striking. His striking abilities are very good. He’s good in every kind of striking, be it Muay Thai style or mixed martial arts. He’s a very smart fighter, too,” Raju said. “[But] I think his weaknesses are probably his cardio and his grappling. I know he has won bouts by submission, but I am not too pleased with his grappling skills.”
“I Can Beat Him”
Competing on a roster along side his fellow Indians Arjan Bhullar, Gurdarshan Mangat and Ritu Phogat, Raju hopes to boost the awareness of mixed martial arts in India. And of course take a step closer to a shot at the ONE lightweight championship. And to do that, the 29 year old will be hunting for the win.
“I am 100 percent certain that I can beat him. There’s no doubt about that,” Raju said. “This win would mean a lot to me. I want this win. I am desperate for this win. I can’t express in words how much this win will mean for me.
“Also, I believe that this win would get huge coverage. So, this would definitely put the Indian mixed martial arts scene on the map.”
Can Rahu Raju beat Amir Khan when they meet at ONE: Reign Of Dynasties?