Combat Sports

ONE 159: Bokang Masunyane on Hiroba Minowa; ‘Don’t Think He’s Got What It Takes’

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Image for ONE 159: Bokang Masunyane on Hiroba Minowa; ‘Don’t Think He’s Got What It Takes’

Bokang Masunyane faces Hiroba Minowa in a high-stakes strawweight match. The South African fighter reflects on his first career loss and assesses his upcoming Japanese opponent.

Less than a week before he returns to action in ONE 159, No. 2 contender Bokang Masunyane has discovered a renewed motivation with his upcoming match against fellow ranked opponent and No. 3 challenger Hiroba Minowa.

In his recent interview with ONE Championship, the South African athlete expressed his gratitude to the Singapore-based promotion for giving him the opportunity to face the best talents in his weight class and the chance to reach his ultimate goal of having a golden strap around his waist.

“For me, it’s always wanting to fight the best fighters in the world. And ONE Championship has got the best strawweight fighters in the world. I’m pleased that they gave me someone within the top five, so I can still claim my ranking in the right way,” said Masunyane.

“I’m here to prove to my division that I am the best in the world. I will prove to the rest of the world watching ONE Championship that I am here to stay. I’m here to become a World Champion,” he added.

Speaking of fighting the best competition, Masunyane is pitted against Japanese ace Hiroba Minowa next, as both men want to bounce back from their recent loss to Jarred Brooks.

Bokang Masunyane Will Do ‘Whatever It Takes’ to Win

The “Little Giant” made a quick rundown about his upcoming foe’s fighting style, but he respectfully stated that Minowa will come up short against him, thus vowing’ to pick up a convincing victory.

“I think Minowa is actually very well-rounded overall. Some of his fights I’ve seen him shoot for takedowns I’ve seen him go for submissions, I’ve seen him throw hands – real good hands – so he’s very well rounded. I believe his ground game is his strongest asset, but as much as I have respect for him, I don’t think he’s got the tools or what it takes to beat me.

“I’ll do whatever it takes to win. I am going to give a very dominant performance to show the division that I’m here to stay. I’m here with a different fire fighting against Minowa.”

Although he sustained his maiden professional defeat during his latest outing against Jarred Brooks, Masunyane still chooses to see the brighter side of that setback and remains appreciative of the things that he currently possesses.

“It was a hard pill for me to swallow having my first loss. It’s something I go over in my head and understand that I don’t want to happen again.

“But for me, even though I had that loss, I had to realize what blessings I have on me. The fact that with COVID and everything that was happening, I was still blessed enough to be able to travel to another country and still be able to do what I love, when there are people that have lost jobs and everything.”

Bokang Masunyane Is in the Best Shape of His Career

Lastly, the South African contender has picked up several valuable lessons from his last bout, not only inside the cage, but also the other aspects that he needed to improve on, of Bokang has taken up seriously.

He revealed that these different other facets of the fighting game are essential in his journey to fulfill his life-long dream of becoming a world champion.

“That loss gave me an extra drive in training. I’ve been working even harder, so this is probably going to be the best shape I’ve ever been in leading up to a fight.

“That loss has also given me a lesson to learn about my body more. And yeah, I feel very good. I started eating clean. I got a dietitian for this camp. Actually, I’m almost on weight now with the change of diet and everything, and I feel hydrated. In order to be a champion, you have to live like one. And that’s what I started doing,” Masunyane concluded.

Featured image credits to ONE Championship

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