Photo Credit: @ranymma on Instagram

ACB 84’s Rany Saadeh Confident he’ll Make Girdham Quit

Before his fight at ACB 84, Rany Saadeh spoke to MMAToday about his move up to bantamweight, his training preferences, the origin of his nickname as well as his upcoming match-up.

Saadeh’s upcoming fight will mark his first as a bantamweight. Having spent his career so far as a flyweight, Saadeh feels that the move up in weight is long overdue. He admits that cutting down to 125lbs. has always been a challenge for him, especially in the last few years. This isn’t surprising considering he made his debut when he was just 18 years old. Now 25, Saadeh has naturally outgrown the weight class.

“I’ve been talking about that step for three years and right now I feel I’ve been fighting in the wrong weight class for three years and still maintaining a top position in the rankings.”

Saadeh was perhaps the victim of his own success as he felt obligated to stay at flyweight as he was the BAMMA Flyweight champion. However, now plying his trade in a new promotion and no longer holding the responsibility of a champion Saadeh is free to move up in weight. With the weight cut no longer an issue, Saadeh is looking to stay more active than he has in recent years. In last three years, he only fought once a year. Apart from the difficult weight cut, Saadeh attributes that to lack of depth in competition at flyweight.

In his last outing, Saadeh fell short against Darren Mima as he got caught in a guillotine choke in under a minute. Although it would have been easy to pin the loss to the difficult weight cut, Saadeh refuses to do that, instead, he looks to find as many things to improve on as possible. It only took a few days for Saadeh to be back in the gym after the fight.

“Losses are needed. To be honest, I’ve always learned more from losses that I did from wins.”

For his training, Saadeh enjoys getting many different looks in and thus travels all around the world. For this camp, he began preparations in Thailand at Phuket Top Team before making way to Manchester and finally putting it all together at his native gym in Berlin. One of the reasons for his globetrotting ways is sparring with people in their gyms, an experience that Saadeh feels closely resembles the actual fight.

In the recent years, many fighters have stepped away from the idea that joining a ‘super camp’ in order to be successful. Saadeh follows that mindset and likes to select his coaches himself. He also does not currently have a head coach and does not feel the need for one. Sadder believes that because he is well aware of his strengths and weaknesses he is more than able to successfully organise his own training.

“I don’t need a babysitter.”

Although he made his debut at only 18-years-old, Saadeh already had plenty of experience having begun his martial arts journey at 5. Despite his early start, Saadeh did not seek easy fights from the beginning. In his fourth fight, he took on fellow top prospect Pietro Menga. Although the fight did not go Saadeh’s way he did meet a friend for life in his opponent. Only six months after their fight, Menga was cornering Saadeh in his next fight. Since then they have regularly trained together and now find themselves fighting in the same division in ACB but are not willing to fight again.

Never the one to shy away from a challenge, Saadeh does not regret facing such a high caliber of opposition in his young career. Saadeh feels that the better the level of his opposition is the better he performs. However, he says that he would recommend younger fighters to gain as much experience as possible in order to grow. Whether it would be through amateur fights or through gradual steps up in competition.

With his BAMMA contract having expired last year, Saadeh is now signed to Absolute Championship Berkut. One of the main reasons for his move to the Russian based promotion is the quality and depth of competition on offer. Although he is more than happy with his contract with ACB, Saadeh admits that fighting for the UFC is still on his checklist. He believes that if he is able to perform in ACB then he will prove that he is more than able to hang in the UFC.

“Every fighter who says he doesn’t want to go to the UFC is lying.”

In his upcoming fight, Saadeh will face off against undefeated Australian prospect Trent Girdham. Saadeh feels that he has to make up for his last performance with a statement in this fight. This fight will mark a steep step up in competition for Girdham, a step which Saadeh feels will be too far.

“This fight is going to be hell for him especially because he has never faced any competition like me (…) I think he will quit.”

Saadeh’s nickname ‘The Prince’ was given to him by the BAMMA ring girls. According to them, Saadeh did not resemble a stereotypical fighter but a prince instead. Saadeh was not the one to argue and thought that it suited his looks and behaviour well.

“If the ring girls give you a nickname, you can’t just refuse it.”

To learn more about Rany Saadeh, follow him on social media:

Facebook: Rany Saadeh

Twitter: @RanyMMA

Instagram: @RanyMMA


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