Interview with Sylvester Chipfumbu above – Video made with https://www.veed.io/
Ahead of his fight at UAE Warriors 24 on October 29th, Sylvester Chipfumbu sat down for an interview to speak about the opportunity he has. Chipfumbu is the EFC Bantamweight Champion but will be looking to adorn his other shoulder with the UAEW Bantamweight Championship that his opponent, Vinicius de Oliveira, holds. Chipfumbu’s nickname “Gladiator” came by his fame of his ‘fight to the very end’ mentality, and he looks to put that on display. Not only does he look to gain the championship, he also hopes to make a statement about African MMA talent. Chipfumbu spoke on getting Dana White’s attention on himself, but also on the African continent and all the talent it holds, his approach to his opponent this Friday, and more. This interview served as a minor exploration of this fighter who has everything it takes to achieve double champ status, and gave a glimpse into what motivates him.
The Best of the Best Could Be In Africa
“I believe Dana White has been sleeping on Africans. I just think, this is an opportunity to speak on behalf of all the African athletes that we’re not just here to take part. He should have faith in us and give us the contracts, and we won’t disappoint him or any MMA fan around the world…Just to show the world what we, as Africans, are capable of doing because I feel like we’ve been overlooked for quite some time.”
“I’d love to show the world what we, guys who live and train in Africa, are capable of doing…I think we have what it takes to rub shoulders with the best, and become the best of the best.”
The Gladiator’s Hit-List
“[Vinicius] is one guy that you’d want to put on your hit-list because, if you tick that name, you would’ve done a great thing.”
“He is a good fighter but, for me, that’s not enough. I feel like I’m the greatest bantamweight right now and I just need a stage to prove that. But I do respect him as an athlete and I respect that he took the fight on short notice, and that the UAE Warriors saw me as a worthy replacement for Ray Borg, and I’m not going to disappoint. I’m going to take it with both hands and take the strap home.”
The Story of the Underdog
“When it comes to adapting and getting the work done, it’s something I have mastered, and I think I know how to win a fight. Most of these guys are still playing checkers and I’m at a level where I’m playing 3-D chess right now. For me, it’s a good thing that, throughout my whole career, no one talks about me until I walk into the cage. I like being the dark horse. I always love the story of an underdog. Who doesn’t love the story of an underdog? I think this one is going to be for my kids one day, for my grandkids one day, and it’s going to be a beautiful story to write.”
Onwards and Upwards
“When Dana White gives me my contract, I’ll be in the UFC and obviously become the best bantamweight in the world. I think for now, that’s where the vision is. I’m working hard everyday so that I can make up this story of mine.”
“My goal, just before I got this fight, I wanted to get an international fight. I was thinking of the Dana White’s Contender Series. So, I think the UAE Warriors, they played that part for me. I’ve got a fight here. My next goal is to get into the UFC and become a UFC Champion, and I think I’m on my way to doing that. It’s all been planned and it’s all been penned down, and one day, I’ll look back at it and admire my piece of work.”
Be sure to check out the featured video for the full interview.
UAE Warriors 24 is on Friday, October 29th and will start at 6pm Gulf Standard Time/10am Eastern Time. Viewers will be able to watch the event on UFC Fight Pass.
Combat sports writer and thought-sharer. Major interest in pushing African combat to the rest of the world.