"The previous fight showed me my weaknesses" - Hiroki Akimoto says losing kickboxing title exposed his faults

Former ONE bantamweight kickboxing world champion Hiroki Akimoto
Former ONE bantamweight kickboxing world champion Hiroki Akimoto

Former ONE bantamweight kickboxing world champion Hiroki Akimoto of Japan says he was humbled quickly after losing the world title in a 2022 showdown with Thai star Petchtanong Petchfergus.

Akimoto locked horns with the Thai icon at ONE 163 almost two years ago, losing a five-round split decision on the judges' scorecards. It was a learning experience for the 31-year-old Evolve MMA product, one that he says taught him some very valuable lessons.

Speaking to ONE Championship in a recent interview, Akimoto says losing to Petchtanong exposed his weaknesses.

The former bantamweight kickboxing king said:

"In terms of training, the previous fight showed me my weaknesses, so I've been working on improving those while further honing my strengths."

Akimoto will now get the chance at redemption when he makes his way back to the ring next week.

Hiroki Akimoto is set to welcome ONE Championship newcomer Wei Rui of China to the world's largest martial arts organization.

The two lock horns at ONE Fight Night 22: Sundell vs. Diachkova on Prime Video. The event broadcasts live from the iconic Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand.

Fans in the United States and Canada can catch all the action live and absolutely free on Friday, May 3rd, U.S. primetime, via an active Amazon prime Video subscription.

Hiroki Akimoto starting to find himself again after returning to big fight training: "I'm getting a good feeling from it"

31-year-old Japanese stalwart Hiroki Akimoto has not seen action since his November 2022 loss to Petchtanong Petchfergus. But the former bantamweight kickboxing king is back in big fight training and is starting to rediscover himself.

Speaking to ONE Championship, Akimoto said:

"Ultimately, I won't know until I actually fight, but I'm getting a good feeling from it. I'm having many realizations in each training session, and I can feel myself growing."

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