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"Just beat somebody who had 5-0 record" - Jihin Radzuan on Itsuki Hirata win at ONE X

Jihin Radzuan (right) defeated the then-undefeated Itsuki Hirata at ONE X. (Images courtesy of ONE Championship)
Jihin Radzuan (right) defeated the then-undefeated Itsuki Hirata at ONE X. (Images courtesy of ONE Championship)
Duane Lucas Pascua

Last month at ONE X, ONE Championship's biggest event ever, Malaysian MMA sensation Jihin 'Shadow Cat' Radzuan pulled off an upset over then-undefeated Japanese rising star Itsuki 'Android 18' Hirata.

Despite almost everyone seeing Radzuan as the underdog, 'Shadow Cat' nullified Hirata's strengths across three rounds.

With her split decision win, Radzuan effectively shook up the atomweight division by putting the breaks on one of its fastest rising stars. Now riding a three-fight winning streak, the young Malaysian might be on the brink of title contention.

Speaking to Sportskeeda MMA's Andrew Whitelaw, Radzuan expressed her feelings towards taking out a highly-touted prospect like Hirata:

"This match, I think, is the biggest in my fighting career. Plus, I just beat somebody who had 5-0 record!"

When asked if Hirata was her hardest opponent, Radzuan had this to say:

"To be honest, I think Mei Yamaguchi is my hardest opponent in my fight career. Although I had two [losses], but then it's not that hard, like, I didn't perform well. For Itsuki Hirata, I already prepared for her. Like, we expected a lot from her because she had very impressive wins and put that high expectation, and for this match I think I did a very good job."

Fighting and beating a veteran like Mei Yamaguchi is surely a feather in anybody's cap. Radzuan beat Yamaguchi just a little over a month before she beat Hirata.

Perhaps 'Shadow Cat' unlocked a new level of greatness after beating Yamaguchi and it showed in her performance at ONE X against Hirata.

Watch our full interview with Jihin Radzuan below:

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"Denice Zamboanga has actually opened my eyes" - Jihin Radzuan on how the Zamboanga loss contributed to her ONE X win

Before going on a three-fight winning streak that culminated in ONE X, Radzuan's last loss was to Filipino firecracker Denice 'Lycan Queen' Zamboanga.

Back in 2019, the Malaysian had very little answer to Zamboanga's pressuring style of grappling and lost via unanimous decision. As with most fighters, Radzuan learned from the loss and came back stronger.

Speaking to Sportskeeda MMA, Radzuan explained how the loss became pivotal to her growth as a fighter:

"To be honest, the last loss to Denice Zamboanga has actually opened my eyes more because I'm the type, like, to go for it when fighting. Like try to be more aggressive and try to take positions. Like, fighting with Denice really opened my eyes because sometimes I would overcommit with punches. And then she comes and banged me and I just, like, fall. Fell down, easy to get and pinned down. So that match really opened up my eyes to learn how to be more ready when people take me down."

The growth showed almost instantly in Radzuan's next fights, especially at ONE X. She's more well-rounded and her grappling has improved tremendously.

We're excited to see where this new version of 'Shadow Cat' brings us. We'd bet it's on a path drenched in gold.


Edited by Harvey Leonard

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