Aung La N Sang understands he needs to "beat a few more guys" so he can "climb back to the top"

Former ONE double-champ Aung La N Sang | Image courtesy of ONE Championship
Former ONE double-champ Aung La N Sang | Image courtesy of ONE Championship

Former ONE two-division world champion Aung La N Sang is set to face Japanese MMA veteran Yushin Okami at ONE 163 in Singapore. The November 19 bout will mark the return of 'The Burmese Python' after losing a rubber match against his rival, Vitaly Bigdash, eight months ago.

This is a long lay-off for an otherwise active fighter but it seems Aung La is taking his time to fix the mistakes of his previous losses.

The former ONE middleweight and light heavyweight king is 1-3 in his last four bouts and was mostly beaten by really good grapplers. In an interview with SCMP MMA, Aung La spoke about what he's doing in fight camp this time around and what it would take for him to climb back on top again:

"I have really high-level grapplers at my disposal that I can work with. So it's not a matter of, ‘Can I do it?,’ it's a matter of when. It's going to take time, I'm probably going to have to beat a few more guys. So it is what it is. I'm willing to climb back to the top."

Aung La N Sang is humble enough to understand the ladder he has to climb in order to get back into world title contention again. He is, however, doing things right. He's taking his time and working with the right people to improve his skills and correct his flaws.

Watch the full interview below:


Aung La N Sang focusing on grappling ahead of Yushin Okami fight

It looks like Aung La is truly not planning on getting dominated on the ground ever again. In the same interview with SCMP MMA, 'The Burmese Python' not only mentioned that he's been preparing for six long months for ONE 163, he's also focusing a lot more on grappling.

When asked who are the grapplers he's been working with, Aung La replied with:

“Rogan Gracie. Rogan is one of them. Eric Coyne as well. More of the jiu-jitsu-heavy guys. Herbert Burns. These are the guys that I work with, a lot of the grapplers, a lot more grappling with this camp. But at the same time, my striking is going to be sharp too.”

It doesn't matter who you are or where you come from, if you're working your jiu-jitsu with someone with the last name Gracie, you're doing something right. Here's to hoping Aung La N Sang's newly-fortified grappling arsenal translates well against the Japanese MMA stalwart, Yushin Okami.

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Edited by Dave
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