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Danial Williams Looks To Continue MMA Success Against Zelang Zhaxi

LockerRoom Team
Calendar Icon14 July 2022

Danial Williams first made a name for himself in Muay Thai when he started competing in 2012. However, his debut in ONE Championship didn’t go as planned after dropping a decision loss to ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Champion Rodtang Jitmuangnon. As a consolation, their clash was named the 2021 ONE Super Series Fight of the Year.

However, his mixed martial arts career is taking off after two consecutive victories inside the ONE Circle. The Australian-Thai defeated combat sports legend Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke via a second-round knockout at ONE: BAD BLOOD. He followed that up with a unanimous decision victory against Namiki Kawahara at ONE 156: EERSEL VS. SADIKOVIC.

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Those triumphs improved his MMA record to 5-1, and he is on a four-fight winning streak in the all-encompassing sport. “Mini-T” will have a chance to extend his triumphant run against Zelang Zhaxi on the main card of ONE 159: DE RIDDER VS. BIGDASH on 22 July at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

It isn’t lost on him that his opponent will be a handful. Zelang may be making his ONE Championship debut, but he already has three victories in ONE Hero Series. He also has a 19-6-1 record with ten knockouts.

For that reason, Williams is preparing for a foe with various moves that will force him to become creative with his attacks.

“It’s a tricky fight. It’s one of those fights where it’s hard to build a game plan, but I’m preparing for the worst. And the worst is him just shooting for takedowns, fighting it on the ground, and that’s what I’m going to expect him to do,” Williams said.

“He’s got so many fights in MMA, so I feel it’s going to be a tough fight for me – probably the hardest MMA fight that I’ve had at this point.”

The Scrappy MMA and Kao Sok Muay Thai representative knows that maintaining the stand-up game will be his best chance at winning. While he admits that Zelang is an excellent and quick boxer, he believes his power is questionable. Williams is also confident he can handle his Chinese opponent’s takedowns.

If he wins against Zelang, Williams would like to compete against those ranked higher than him in the ONE strawweight division. However, even if his career is on the rise, he maintains a humble attitude by giving props to the other contenders.

“I have been putting some of the fighters that have been there for a while on notice, the Lito Adiwangs, the Jeremy Miados. I won’t get too ahead of myself in MMA, but I want to focus on getting better and see how I perform in this fight before fighting the next guys,” Williams said.

“I respect the top five. They’re all outstanding. I hope I carry on entertaining fights so that the guys in the strawweight MMA division will be willing to fight me.”

Watch ONE 159: De Ridder vs. Bigdash on Disney+ Hotstar or Star Sports Select 1, beginning with the lead card at 3:30 p.m. India Standard Time (IST) on Friday, July 22. Meanwhile, the main card broadcasts live on Disney+ Hotstar and Star Sports Select 1 at 6 p.m. IST.


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