At 23, Fares Ziam is already one of the most gifted French fighters in combined martial arts (MMA).
“I want to write my name in the UFC and be champion.” In 2007, simply ten years previous, Fares found MMA and shortly designed his dream. It have to be mentioned that in the household of the younger man, fight sports activities reign supreme. His father is a former skilled boxer and his brothers are in flip right this moment. But it was the small display screen that might determine its future. “I discovered the UFC thanks to RTL 9 which was the first channel to broadcast fights, and I went crazy about it immediately,” Fares remembers.
When he joined Team Ezbiri, with Fouad Ezbiri (former world kickboxing champion) as his coach, Givordin was not but conscious of the full extent of his potential, however his profession plan was nicely outlined: be part of theUltimate Fighting Championship (UFC). However, the street is lengthy, very lengthy to journey. “In high school, I finished classes at 6 pm. My mother took me by car to Villeurbanne. I then went on boxing from 6 to 8 p.m. then jujitsu at 8:30 p.m. I took the 10:24 pm train to Part-Dieu, I returned home every day around 11 pm. Some days it was harder to motivate yourself ”.
However, Fares’ sacrifices and tireless efforts made his one dream come true. “I was with friends, and my manager called me to tell me that the UFC offered me a contract for four fights including one, three weeks later, in the Nurmagomedov-Poirier card. I thought it was a joke at first (laughs) ”, explains the younger prodigy. “Then I went straight to the United States”.
The beginnings of a promising journey
Ziam switches, at that second, right into a new dimension even when he’s already a seasoned fighter (10 wins, 2 losses in MMA). In France, making a residing from MMA was very tough earlier than legalization, many fighters went overseas to assist themselves. At the UFC? The wage is far more fascinating with the first video games paid round 10,000 € for the combat and 20,000 € for the victory.
The standing of the fighters additionally modifications with the largest federation of combined martial arts. “Which attracts a lot more sponsors”. Last September, the lengthy-awaited second in the Frenchman’s younger profession arrives. Fares enters the huge league along with his first combat.
Following the withdrawal of Magomed Mustafaev, he challenges the South African Don Madge, shedding in factors and with honors. “I had never been in danger, but I ran into an experienced opponent, good tactically. I learned from this fight ”, insists the“ Smile Killer ”. Why this nickname? “My manager gave me this nickname because I smile all the time, in training, in weighing against the opponent … But from the start of the fight, my smile evaporates and I become a killer », Reveals the latter.
The confinement, slowing his rise, the striker (specialist in foot-fists) worked a lot on wrestling, an essential discipline in MMA like the specialist and king of the discipline Khabib Nurmagomedov, now retired. “With Issa, my teammate at Team Ezbiri, who was French wrestling champion, we’re nonetheless engaged on this level as a result of I nonetheless have to enhance”, explains the Givordin. According to his “wrestling coach”, Fares learns quickly, very quickly. “He will all the time stay a striker however he doesn’t hesitate now to attempt to put his opponent on the floor, he’s progressing nicely, it’s a good omen,” said Issa Sanfratello, also a pro in MMA.
“They all the time wish to combat on the floor in opposition to me”
And for its second fight, more than a year later, the Givordin made use of its various trainings. Opposed to the Australian Jamie Mullarkey (26 years old, 12 wins-4 losses), Fares Ziam wins by unanimous decision (29-28) in a very balanced and tough fight. Taken to the ground three times, Fares Ziam wins thanks to his percussion and his boxing efficiency. “They always want to fight on the ground against me. This is what I had failed me the last time against Don Madge but the training pays off, ”notes Ziam, relieved of this snatch victory, which is finally launching his career.
The young man, very ambitious and sure of himself, does not intend to stop there. “What motivates me is to be the best, to be number 1. I have had this competitive spirit since I was little. I cannot aim for anything other than the lightweight (-70kg) belt. When I leave the locker room I only think about victory, I tell myself that I was made for that ”.
The following ? Fares did not lack daring in announcing at a press conference that he would be ready to enter the Octagon with the very experienced Bobby Green (27-10-1). The latter replied on Twitter: “If he talks about me, I’ll come see him.” “The fight has not yet been decided by the UFC, but American fans love the show and I want to give it to them,” insists Fares.
His wrestling coach is much more assured by predicting a reasonably straightforward victory for his foal. “Fares is too tall in height (1.86m) for Bobby and would counter him quite easily. For me, it’s won in advance, ”he says. Fares Ziam is undoubtedly not completed climbing the ranks.