Wednesday, Dec 06, 2023

‘He Took A Risk, He Gave A Show’ – Anatoly Malykhin Praises Fabricio Andrade For Kickboxing World Title Attempt

‘He Took A Risk, He Gave A Show’ – Anatoly Malykhin Praises Fabricio Andrade For Kickboxing World Title Attempt

"Sladkiy" is proud of his teammate despite seeing him fall short to Jonathan Haggerty last Friday.

Last Friday, November 3, Andrade stepped out of his comfort zone to battle ONE Bantamweight Muay Thai World Champion Jonathan Haggerty for the vacant bantamweight kickboxing throne in the main event of ONE Fight Night 16 on Prime Video.

That epic World Champion vs. World Champion showdown took place at Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, and Malykhin was undoubtedly paying close attention.

After a firey and competitive first round, Andrade found himself on the receiving end of a vicious offensive onslaught, as Haggerty finished the contest via knockout about two minutes into the second frame.

The loss stung, but Malykhin is quick to credit “Wonder Boy” – who hasn’t competed in professional kickboxing in years – for stepping up against one of the planet’s top pound-for-pound striking specialists.

The Russian told

“[Andrade] showed courage. He could have just stayed in MMA, defended his belt, and not taken risks. But he took a risk, he gave a show. A lot of people watched that fight.”

Indeed, with his undefeated MMA record in ONE and five highlight-reel finishes, Andrade has firmly established himself as one of the sport’s most dangerous strikers.

In squaring off with Haggerty for kickboxing gold, the Brazilian not only took a risk but also put himself out there to participate in a massive fight that attracted the attention of combat sports fans around the globe.

Malykhin is grateful to ONE for making the matchup happen – and he’s confident that his teammate will soon return to top form:

“Thank you ONE for such super-fights. The organization puts them together, and we watch these fights with fascination on TV, so let’s move on. It’s not a big deal. Soon, Fabrício will prove himself number one again.”

Malykhin Says Long Training Camp May Have Affected Andrade

Anatoly Malykhin was present at Tiger Muay Thai for much of Fabricio Andrade’s ONE Fight Night 16 training camp, so he knows the 26-year-old knockout artist prepared hard for his World Title bout against Jonathan Haggerty.

But despite “Wonder Boy’s” best efforts, the fight didn’t go as expected.

As Malykhin explained afterward, one misstep led to another, eventually leading to a finishing flurry from Haggerty:

“As for Fabricio, what went wrong? It’s a fight and he missed a punch, and after that, things just didn’t go according to plan anymore. He started missing other punches as well, and the referee stopped the fight. 

“As for the training camp, Fabricio was training every day, sometimes two times a day, three times a day. He approached the fight in good shape, and he was recovering well.”

Malykhin knows the Brazilian has the skills and determination to compete at the highest levels of striking, but he believes the extended fight camp might have taken its toll.

Because the clash with Haggerty was twice pushed to a later date, Andrade spent nearly half a year preparing, pushing his body to the limit day in and day out.

The two-division MMA kingpin added:

“The only thing that could have affected him was the long camp. Fabricio had virtually no rest. He was in training for five to six months and could have gotten a little banged up from the training. That’s the only thing I see that could have affected this fight.”