Miado still eager to face Ikeda after shelved fight

Filipino fighter Jeremy Miado is still all fired up in facing Senzo Ikeda after the Japanese fighter stunned Elipitua Siregar in ONE: Heavy Hitters last Jan. 14.

Jeremy Miado (ONE Championship)

This after Miado, the original opponent of Ikeda, was forced to pull out of the match due to ONE's health and safety protocols knowing that he had tested positive for COVID-19.

"I know and I expected those from him. I can say that I'm amazed with how both athletes performed in that match, but I'm certainly impressed with Ikeda. You can see how determined he was to get the win and he really showed his best to win that fight," said Miado, who is currently in quarantine in Singapore.

"He really worked hard for it. You can see his dedication and his fighter spirit in all those three rounds. He never gave up and he really wanted that finish, and he got it."

Coming from an intense ground action, Ikeda delivered a solid body shot to Siregar but the final shot to the liver left the Indonesian fighter grimacing as referee Olivier Coste halted the match with 2:58 remaining in the third round.

Miado said Ikeda's recent win is concrete proof that the Japanese contender poses a "very interesting challenge" for him to move forward in his mixed martial arts career and the ONE Championship rankings.

Miado, who holds a 10-4 record, also lauded Ikeda for the performance despite the last minute changes.

"I'm more excited now. We prepared for him and he proved that he's really a strong fighter. He presents a very interesting challenge for me that I need to get over to progress with my career," he said. "You can see that he's really a striker, and that means that we have the same bread and butter. So if ever we get matched up again, I have to really be at my best and strive harder in my training."

"For me, I know that I still have a lot to learn and prove here before I can get to my goals of being included in the ONE Athlete Rankings. But it doesn't mean that I'll quit that easily. No matter how hard the task is, I can only promise that I will work hard to make it there," added the Marrok Force warrior.

"I'm focused on the fight and everything that comes after that is just a plus. If ever I'll be given that, I know that will be a big help for my family, for the future of my baby Tobiko. That's why I can only assure everyone that I will give my best with or without the bonus because all I aspire to is to earn a future title shot."