Ngabdi Mulyadi was one of the rising stars of Indonesian MMA, running up a record of 5-2 with the TPI FC promotion. When that folded in 2004 he found himself in the same position as all the other Indonesian mixed martial artists at the time, training without any prospect of finding an actual fight.
Now aged 31 he is making his MMA comeback but says that the pressure of fighting at ONE FC: Battle of Heroes in Jakarta will be easy to cope with after the weight of expectation which comes with representing his country at wrestling.
“I am not nervous because I am used to competing in big tournaments,” said Mulyadi in a conversation with Fighters.com. “I got a bronze medal in the SEA Games in 2009 and I was representing an entire country then so there was a lot of pressure, in MMA I am fighting on my own so I don’t feel any pressure.”
In fact he is so relaxed that he says he has not bothered doing any research on his opponent, Malaysian stand-up specialist Peter Davis, and the only information he has is that he is a model, explaining, “I know nothing about my opponent, I don’t care I will just go in there to fight. Someone told me he is a model but I don’t care about that. I do not want to hurt him, just to beat him.”
Although his last recorded fight was way back in 2004 Mulyadi has been active since then, participating in an annual MMA competition called RCTI Duel.
“When TPI FC finished in 2004 there was RCTI Duel, an MMA competition which took place every year so I fought on that but I haven’t fought MMA since 2009 because there have been no shows,” said Mulyadi. “There are a lot of wrestlers who were champions in TPI FC and now they are all looking to get into fighting for One FC there are kickboxing competitions but I am a wrestler not a kickboxer.”
Wrestling has been a part of his life since the age of 18 and he continues to train, teach and compete full time, revealing, “I first began wrestling as a junior in 1998 when I was in High School, which is quite late to start, most people begin when they are younger. At 20 years old I began to fight as a senior, I enjoy fighting and wrestling. I get money from the Indonesian government to work as a wrestling coach and also to train in wrestling. I normally coach one day a week and train the rest of the time because the government want me to do well in international competition.”
His training for ONE FC’s historic first event in Jakarta has been a little different because it has not been funded by the state and has focused on all of the elements of mixed martial arts, stating, “When I compete in MMA I compete as an individual, the government don’t give me any money for that. I have been training every day, morning and evening. I wrestle every morning and work with a kickboxing coach at night and I have also been training BJJ. I am confident in my striking because I have been training every day with my kickboxing coach.”
After having represented his country on the international stage so many times in the past Mulyadi is completely relaxed about his appearance at ONE FC, which will be broadcast by a major domestic TV channel in Indonesia.
“I know there will be a lot of people at the show but it doesn’t bother me because I have wrestled in front of big crowd before but this will be the biggest crowd to ever see me fight MMA,” said Mulyadi of the opportunity. “It’s very exciting for Indonesian fighters to have a show like ONE Fighting Championship that they can fight on and I want to fight for ONE FC as often as possible, I like to fight, I enjoy it.”
He may not be representing his country in an official capacity but he is up against a Malaysian fighter and national pride will still be at stake, a point which is definitely not lost on him, saying, “I cannot lose to a Malaysian, I will win for sure!”
The ONE FC undercard will stream for free starting at about 8:00 AM EST on Saturday morning with the main card available for $9.99. Check out the organization’s website or Facebook Page for more info.