Ireland’s Cian Cowley will be fighting at Brave 13 at the SSE Arena in Belfast on 9th June 2018 against Oktawian Daniel Olejniczak in his second professional MMA fight.
Cowley is a decorated Muay Thai fighter who trains at SBG Ireland with the likes of Conor McGregor and Brave 13’s main event Frans Mlambo. Check out what he had to say ahead of the fight below.
Your coach, John Kavanagh has high hopes for your upcoming fight against Oktawian and predicts that you would get the win, specifically by 1st round KO? What are your thoughts?
Well, John knows best, he’s one of the best fight analysts in the world, if not the best, in my opinion. So, if this is the prediction John has I wouldn’t go too far off that then. He knows my style, he knows what I’m capable of. Also, he’s been in the corner against Daniel twice, so he knows the ins and outs of his game and knows what his game plan is going to be coming into the fight. So, if John is predicting a first-round KO, then that’s what it’s going to be.
Who were your training partners for your upcoming fight in Brave CF Belfast? How did they influence your game plan heading into the fight?
Training partners for this fight are the same as always. I train with the whole team in our training sessions. I also do a lot of work with my close friends and training partners Lee Hammond, Kiefer Crosbie and James Gallagher. I’ve been doing a lot of work with Ritchie Smullen as well. But yeah, same as always really. I don’t change training partners to suit any fight. I train with the whole team, we have the best of the best in the gym. From strikers to wrestlers to jiu-jitsu players. I’m training with world-class fighters day in day out.
You have trained with arguably one of the best MMA athletes in the world, Conor McGregor, give us your thoughts on how that influenced you? What is one thing that is so distinct about training alongside him?
Training with Connor is a big asset to my game and everyone else’s on the team. He’s the best fighter on the planet, hands down. So we just feed off that. I particularly feed off his energy and his fight IQ and the way he looks at fights, the way he goes about it. I feed off that and try my best to replicate that. His views on fighting are something that we agree on a lot, it just suits well. Getting to train with him every day is an honour.
You had been to events hosted by Brave Combat Federation multiple times, what are those aspects that you noticed about the promotion? What do you expect from the promotion that will be unique and will benefit MMA in Ireland?
I’ve been at a couple of Brave promotions now. I was at Brave 1 when they launched. It’s a great promotion and I’ve always had an interest in Brave and the people behind it. I like all the team at Brave and all the guys behind the scenes are great, cool lads. They have big plans and I like the way they go about things and all the fighters are well looked after. I think Brave coming to Ireland is huge for the Irish MMA scene. It’s overdue at this stage, I’ve been asking them to come over for a long time now. It’s a big benefit to Ireland, Irish MMA and the Irish fighters getting to showcase their skills and such a big promotion.
Frans Mlambo from SBG will compete for the bantamweight championship against a fighter from Team Lakay. This is a rematch, how do you see this fight going and what are your thoughts about Frans Mlambo as a fighter?
I’ve been in Frans corner for several of his fights now. I was in his corner for the first fight against Loman, where he lost. It was a close fight, great fight as well but I really think Frans has his number on this one now. Frans has got a lot-lot better since the last fight. Everywhere, not just at the takedown defence because you could see in the first fight, every time Frans let the hands go, he was lighting Loman up, which will be the same in this fight. I think Frans has evolved more with his wrestling and ground game so I think this is going to be an early night and Frans will get the win back and get the belt.