Tatsumitsu Wada locks horns with Ivanildo Delfino. The bout goes Friday, January 31st at Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines. Wada said, “I like Manila, so I was looking forward to the fight. However, everything is nothing special. I will do same thing as usual”. It’s part of the latest ONE Championship card on the preliminary portion, ONE: Fire & Fury. Delfino is unbeaten as a pro and is making his debut in ONE. Wada steps out for his 35th pro MMA bout and is looking to rebound from being ousted from the flyweight world grand prix.
ONE: Fire & Fury
Recent losses to Danny Kingad and Mighty Mouse have put Wada in a spot where he really needs to reassert himself among the division’s very elite. The aforementioned loss to Demetrious Johnson has done little to dissuade Wada. In fact, fighting the GOAT flyweight in MMA history doesn’t seem to have done much of anything for Wada’s overall game one way or the other. Wada stated, “I gained experience from that fight with DJ, but I don’t think I became strong because of that fight. I mean it is no significant change.”
He seems squarely focused on his next adversary who happens to be 8-0 as a pro and making his promotional debut. Wada started his career as an 0-5 and has now transformed into one of the better regarded, tenured fighters on the Asian MMA scene. The career arcs of both have been different but they intersect at this key moment in time. Tatsumitsu Wada seems ready for the moment. Wada quipped, “It is not fair that there is no videos of my opponent. But it can not be helped. When the bell rings, I need to beat opponent. I will show the fulfillment of my capacities. And will do what I want to show and do.”
Wada is a veteran on the DEEP and Rizin circuits. Competing for ONE Championship has been an altogether different experience in multiple ways for Tatsumitsu Wada. Wada remarked, “The first thing is fight money…. DEEP is a domestic organization, so I went to the venue by bicycle on an event day. In that sense, totally different. I come here a few days before the fight, there are always so many words that I don’t know/can’t understand, also ONE has tidy medical check.”
Wada continued, “So there are so many differences between ONE and DEEP. However, after all, once I get inside the circle cage/ring, it doesn’t matter whether my opponent is Japanese or not. When the bell rings I will do same thing. Also, I have become accustomed to differences in language and environment, so I am not getting nervous. I was confused before, no more for now. I don’t feel stress as well.”
Boxing and Grappling have been a big focus in the preparation ahead of January 31st. Wada said, “I had training so many times with Shuya Kamikubo. Because I think he is the strongest/best MMA athlete/grappler in bantamweight of Japan, consciously did training with him. The experience that I did training with him a lot, it should be helping me. Chonan-san was overviewing for me. I also have personal boxing trainer. Regarding the grappling, I have a good teammate who told me everything that I ask them. There is nothing more I can do.”