MMA living legend SergeI Kharitonov (27-6-0, M-1: 5-0-0) puts his perfect M-1 record on the line today against fellow Russian heavyweight, “Cherepovets Giant” Anton Vyazigin (9-2-1, M-1: 4-1-0), in today’s (May 24) M-1 Challenge 92 main event SuperFight, at M-1 Arena in Saint Petersburg, Russia.
M-1 Challenge 92 will be live-streamed from Russia in high definition on www.M1Global.TV. Viewers will be able to watch the preliminary fights and main card by logging on to register at www.M1Global.TV. Fans may watch all the action on their computers, as well as on Android and Apple smart phones and tablets. M-1 Challenge 92 will also be available on www.FITE.TV (preliminary card is free, $7.99 for the main card)
The 37-year-old Kharitonov has defeated a Who’s Who of some of top heavyweight MMA fighters, including Alister Overeem, Andrei Arlovski, Fabricio Werdum and Pedro Rizzo.
Kharitonov had a few last words before the action officially begins:
SergeI, you have had 33 professional MMA during your career and now you are 37 years old. What is your motivation in MMA? Why do you keep fighting?
SK: “Fighting has become an essential part of my life. I literally can’t live without it. I love new challenges, and this is why I compete at different events and now, for example, I have a new challenge: two fights in one week. Tomorrow I have an MMA fight at M-1 Challenge 92 and in a week, I’ve got a kickboxing bout scheduled.
“This is life and we have to take risks, because no risk, no reward. So, I am ready for this. MMA is my passion, but I love kickboxing, too, and now I am interested in competing in both sports.”
It is said that for heavyweights the age of 35 is the prime, because this is the time when heavyweights are usually quite experienced, but still in shape. What do you think about it?
SK: “It all depends. One fighter can reach his prime at 25, another one at 35, but, in my opinion, it depends on his conscious. Take a look at some boxers like George Foreman, who fought until he was 48. Even in lighter divisions there are many examples of successful old fighters like Bernard Hopkins and even Floyd Mayweather Jr., who is not that young today. If you keep training hard, you can fight for a long time.”
Only twice in your career you won by decision. How does it happen that you finish almost all your opponents?
SK: “I always look at my opponent; if he gives me an opportunity to finish him, I do it. I don’t care how I win fights and I have no goal to finish my opponents. The only thing that really matters is the victory.”
Anton Vyazigin has power in his hands. Do you have a plan for the upcoming fight or do you need one?
SK: “My fighting style depends on the situation, but I think tomorrow we are going to have a stand-up fight. At this stage of my career, I do not really change my training camp for new opponents. I have pretty much experience, so I can just enter The Rage and do what I have to do. Nevertheless, I usually watch my opponents’ fights. I watched two fights of Vyazigin and can say that he is a great young athlete with heavy punches. I am very excited because it makes me happy that young guys like him are ready to replace us. Who knows how much time we have left, a year, two, three, maybe even five? These guys have long careers ahead and they have to keep growing and showing their best!”