Robert Krecicki at BAMMA 7, Birmingham 2011
MMA fighter Robert Krecicki

A mouth-watering Light Heavyweight clash between Robert Krecicki and Fraser Opie opens the card at BAMMA 7, a matchup which should perfectly set the tone for the rest of the evening’s entertainment. And even though Krecicki has become accustomed to headlining events, most notably his recent title win against Toni Valtonen, he is looking forward to the opportunity to commence proceedings; “It’s a great opportunity for me to be the first fight on BAMMA 7. But my position on the card alters nothing. I train equally as hard whether on the prelims or the main card.”

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And generally, he appears buoyant heading into the highest profile fight of his young career; “This is a great opportunity and challenge for me to fight on the BAMMA promotion. It’s a big show. It’s easily the biggest organisation for which I’ve fought. I look forward to displaying my skills in front of a large crowd, which will include many of my friends.”
The Pole they call “Big Rob”, who is often informed of his resemblance to Vitali Klitschko, arrived in the UK five years ago from Elk in North Poland, and works as a porter at Cheltenham hospital when not training down at his resident Trojan Free Fighters gym.

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In May 2010 Krecicki decided to attend his local MMA gym; “I’ve always been interested in MMA and my friends were constantly encouraging me to try it out.” He was already no stranger to the noble arts; “In Poland, I’ve trained previously in boxing and kickboxing and competed at an amateur level. But my principal skill is judo, which I’ve been practising for over a decade.”

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Within 3 months of entering an MMA gym, Krecicki craved the competition; “After a few months I decided I wanted to fight. If I’m training, I like to test myself”. And he has wasted absolutely no time in accumulating an impressive 5-1 professional record during his first year of highly-active competition. BAMMA 7 will showcase his seventh outing in what has constituted a busy 12-month period.

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His training partners have certainly assisted in his meteoric rise; “I train with some high-class teammates including Che Mills, Matt Ewin and Antanas Jabutis and many other great fighters at the gym.” Yet whilst this calibre of training has instilled confidence into the Polish native, he’s still aware of the difficult task at hand; “He’s a good fighter Fraser Opie. I’ve seen a few of his fights online. He’s particularly dangerous at the start of a fight.”

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Krecicki is acutely aware of his opponent’s deficiencies, with all of Opie’s five career losses arriving via submission, but he realises that it’s a facet of the game in which “The Omen” will have improved; “I’ve seen him lose his last two via guillotine, but he’ll be training hard to avoid those mistakes. My guillotine is decent, but I’m not banking on it alone.” And whilst many presume that this will be a classic case of striker vs grappler, Krecicki insists that he’s content fighting in whichever domain; “I can’t predict the nature of the fight as they are all different. My gameplan ensures that I’m going to be confident fighting on the feet or on the ground.”

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A matter-of-factness underpins Krecicki’s calm outward demeanour and his parting message for Opie is ominous; “I’m a fighter. That’s it. I just want to fight, and if he wants to fight as well, it should be an exciting contest. He’ll be looking for a quick finish, but so will I. Ultimately I would like to become BAMMA’s inaugural LHW champion, though first I can’t look past a good opponent like Opie.”

Interview by Jonathan Shrager

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Win BAMMA 7 competiton tickets for the NIA, Birmingham 2011GoDaddy.com presents BAMMA 7 in association with Lonsdale and PKR.com Saturday September 10th at The National Indoor Arena, Birmingham. Buy Tickets from www.bamma.com  and www.theticketfactory.com.

Watch it live and exclusive on Syfy (UK) at 9pm GMT and worldwide at www.bamma.com at 4pm ET / 1pm PT

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thisisbirminghamInterviewsUncategorizedBAMMA,BAMMA 7,Birmingham,Interview,Mixed Martial Arts,National Indoor Arena,NIA,Robert KrecickiA mouth-watering Light Heavyweight clash between Robert Krecicki and Fraser Opie opens the card at BAMMA 7, a matchup which should perfectly set the tone for the rest of the evening’s entertainment. And even though Krecicki has become accustomed to headlining events, most notably his recent title win against...The latest news, updates and events in Birmingham