Touted as a future champion, Pakistan’s Ahmed Mujtaba makes his return to ONE this weekend at ONE 163: Akimoto vs. Petchtanong.
The 29-year-old holds an impressive 8-2 record, and picked up a stunning first round knockout win over Rahul K. Raju last time out in January 2021 – and now he’s promising to return better than ever.
Following that win he took some time out and went to the United States and trained and at the American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) – home to some of the biggest names in MMA and combat sports such as Khabib Nurmagomedov, Islam Makhachev, and coach Javier Mendez. Mujtaba said that learning experience was invaluable and is now primed to make a spectacular return to the lightweight division.
“I am super excited, you know. It’s been a long time. Just can’t wait to step back into the cage, you know,” he said. “After fighting Rahul Raju, I had plans to go abroad, so I went to the US, I went to AKA, American Kickboxing Academy. I did my camp over there for four and a half months and it went really well. I learned a lot of great things. It was one of the best camps I’ve ever had.
“After that, I went back to Pakistan and I continued my training and I feel there’s a lot of difference in my training, I’ll deliver that on the fight night. People will see the new Wolverine, with different skills, with a different mindset, and with different power, you know.
Standing in his way of a dream return is Brazil’s Abraao Amorin, who has lost just once in his last five fights, and had a successful ONE debut in April this year when he scored a second round TKO win over Dae Song Park. Mujtaba is conscious of his opponent’s capabilities with his hands, but feels he has also seen enough to be confident heading into the clash.
“Abraao is a good fighter overall,” he said. “He just tries to swing a lot of punches. In his last fight, the first round didn’t really go really well, according to his plan. But in the second round, he got the opportunity and he won the fight, though it is a third-degree black belt, but for me, I’ve trained with black belts and with the Russian squad, so I’m ready for it.
“I don’t care whoever it is in front of me. I’ll go in the cage and I have to smash and I will win, you know.”
Mujtaba feels his well-rounded game will have answers to any question Abraao may pose, and says he is ready for any type of challenge this weekend.
“For me, I don’t care if he wants to wrestle, I’ll wrestle him,” he explains. “If he wants to do striking, I will strike with him, if he wants to do BJJ, I’ll do BJJ. I’m ready in every aspect of this art, you know, because I’ve been training for a very long time, and I feel that energy inside me and I just can’t wait for the date of the fight, you know.”
And a message for all his fans?
“All I want to say is that the Wolverine is back and I’m going to go and put the show on. And I just want to say to the fans in Singapore where people love me as well, I want to say that I’m coming to Singapore, and it’s going to be fireworks. Just be ready. And mark your calendars.”
ONE 163: Akimoto vs. Petchtanong: takes place Saturday November 19 2pm GST at the Singapore Indoor Stadium Arena, Singapore. This is a night not to be missed so mark your calendars, download the ONE Super App, and go to watch.onefc.com now!