Chikadze: "I'm going to KO Pinto at GLORY 37, then I want title shot"
Published on Jan 3, 2017
Featherweights will fly in the opening fight of the GLORY 37 LOS ANGELES Superfight Series card on January 20 when Giga Chikadze (36-5, 21 KO's) meets young prospect Victor Pinto (72-26, 22 KO's) of Thailand.
Chikadze is a GLORY veteran with a 4-2 record in the organization and is 3-1 in his last four outings. Muay Thai stylist Pinto comes from France by way of Thailand, where he had his first fight aged just 11 and three years later became the youngest foreign fighter ever to compete at the revered Lumpini Stadium.
The challenge ahead of Pinto now is to adapt his orthodox Muay Thai skills to the sport of kickboxing, which limits the clinch and requires more emphasis on boxing, combinations and pace.
“He's a good fighter, good Muay Thai and he has a lot of experience for a young age. But I will beat him, I'm going to knock him out. He has nothing to impress me,” says Chikadze.
“I want to knock him out and then I think I should get a title shot. I won against the former champion [Serhiy Adamchuk] in the last Featherweight Contender Tournament so I think I deserve a title shot if I win this fight.”
That tournament took place at GLORY 33 NEW JERSEY. Chikadze made it to the final after beating Adamchuk, where he met Matt 'Matics' Embree of Canada. Embree had stopped Chibin Lim of South Korea in the semi-finals and managed to stop Chikadze in the final.
Winning the tournament put Embree (39-7, 18 KO's) into title contention and he will take his shot against current featherweight champion Robin van Roosmalen in Los Angeles, on the same card as Chikadze is facing Pinto.
“Nobody is a better fighter than me in my division, nobody, and they all know that,” says Chikadze. “If you look at the last show [I fought on] you understand what an important fight I won [against Adamchuk] and what an easy fight Embree had [against Lim].
“Tournament fights are a different story to regular fights. I will beat Embree ten fights from ten in a regular fight. For him, Christmas came early in 2016.
“I cant wait to prove it. I hope he wins against Roosmalen and after my nice KO win over Pinto, GLORY will give me an opportunity to fight Embree for the title.”
GLORY 37 LOS ANGELES takes place in downtown Los Angeles at 'The Novo by Microsoft' on Friday, January 20 and is headlined by middleweight champion Jason 'Psycho' Wilnis defending his title against New Zealand-based standout Israel Adesanya.