CAPE TOWN – Ricky Misholas believes that he can succeed where Ruan Potts and Elvis Moyo failed.
That’s right, Ricky is confident he can floor the giant that is Jared ‘The Mountain’ Vanderaa (8-3-0).
“He is a good fighter, but he has a few holes we have identified,” says the Junkyard MMA athlete ahead of his championship bout with the EFC heavyweight champion of the world.
This weekend in Pretoria, Ricky (7-7-0) feels that all will be revealed.
“All Jared’s flaws will all be exploited and one will become his downfall. There is not only one way to end this fight,” Ricky says.
Powerful words from a man who is set to face a “Mountain” standing at 1.91m tall, with a reach of 195cm.
It’s also powerful words regarding a giant with silky boxing skills and the ability to put you to sleep either via a submission or a knockout kick.
Jared’s power was put on show at the end of last year, as he quickly dispelled any rumours of EFC legend and former UFC fighter Ruan Potts, having a seat on the heavyweight throne.
Jared outsmarted and out-grappled the man they call ‘Fangzz’ (due to his dangerous submission and locks) in their championship fight after the DRC’s Dalcha Lungiambula relinquished the title to ply his trade in the UFC.
And now, after earning the HW belt, Jared will get a chance to prove why he is the champ.
“He is the champion, but we haven’t really seen much of his skill in his few fights at EFC. He hasn’t been pushed into deep waters yet.
“He might have lots of talent, but it requires more than that to be a champ,” adds Ricky, who lives and trains in South Africa under coach Ferdinand Basson in Johannesburg.
“My fitness is better and I feel even stronger because of the extra rounds we’ve been putting in, despite it being a shorter camp than we wanted.
“In terms of fighting, mentally not much has changed. Our camp and prep has been stable in our approach for the last two years under Ferdie Basson, Vusi Mtolo and Paul Cradick.
“We approach each fight as if it’s the most important,” Ricky says about taking on Jared in a five-round battle.
Following Dalcha’s departure, Ricky is determined to bring the belt back to the ‘Motherland’.
“All African fighters fighting in global promotions motivate me. We all need to support our local fighters, wherever they fight.
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“These guys are clearing the path for all African fighters to showcase their talent to the world,” Ricky says of the recent spike in attention from around the world as fighters like Dalcha, Don Madge (SA), Israel Adesanya (Nigeria) and Kamaru Usman (Nigeria) have a chance to solidify their legacies in the UFC (the biggest promotion in the world).
“I still have plans locally after winning the HW belt, but fighting for all the world to see is very exciting. African MMA is on the brink of greatness.”
Time will tell whether the man from the DRC – who possesses the ability to stop any show at any time with his forceful boxing – will have the ability to climb a mountain and raise the African flag from up above.
EFC 77 fight card:
Martin van Staden vs Joe Cummins
Jared Vanderaa vs Ricky Misholas
Shaw Dean vs Quinton Rossouw
Alain Ilunga vs Lukasz Swirydowics
Gordon Roodman vs Justin Smith
Tumisang Madiba vs Devon Cronje
Roedie Roets vs Pierre Botha
Nerik Simoes vs Marcel Els
Asiashu Tshitamba vs Orlando Machaba
Serge Kasanda vs Cedrick Mbala
Trezegeut Kanyinda vs Benjamin Mangala
Stephen de la Rey vs Aly Kalambay