Gianni Subba was preparing to make his professional MMA debut on a small show in Southern Malaysia when he got the call to fight in front of 10,000 fans at ONE FC: Rise of Kings. Subba seized the moment to knock his Singaporean opponent Bruce Loh out cold with a soccer kick in the opening round in what will go down as the most impressive MMA debuts ever.
A couple of months ago he had never even have a fight but he now has a contract with Asia’s biggest MMA promotion and after such an emphatic win he is likely to be offered a second fight sooner rather than later.
He spoke to Fighters.com about how it feels to have suddenly become one of Malaysia’s most famous fighters and, as might be imagined, life is good.
Did the fight with Bruce Loh go how you thought it would?
No! *laughs* I didn’t think I would finish him on the feet! The game plan was to take him down and pound him out the first round. And then look to finish in the second.
You spent a lot of time cutting weight in the same sauna as Loh Did that affect you at all and was it awkward?
I think Bruce and I were in there together for at least an hour. No, not at all (awkward). We basically talked about how terrible weight cutting is and how it sucks not to have the weight allowance. Small talk, nothing about the fight.
Five weeks ago you were preparing to make your MMA debut on a small show in Johor Bahru but now you are 1-0 for ONE FC and have a soccer kick KO which everyone is talking about. How does it feel?
It feels good! I feel blessed man. I was prepared to fight a few local shows before fighting for ONE FC. The hard work payed off for sure.
What do you think of the ONE FC rules? Do you enjoy being able to use soccer kicks?
Yes, it’s nice to have the freedom to kick whenever. It opens up a lot of opportunities for finishes.
You were advertized as being a wrestler and grappler but you set up the win with a perfectly times left hook. Are you confident in your boxing?
I am confident in my striking for sure. I work really hard at all aspects of the game, and I have a great set of coaches around me to help me improve.
Did a lot of people in Malaysia watch your fight?
My family and friends definitely did. I had great support from them and they give me motivation.
Would you like to get on the next ONE FC card?
Definitely. I’m hoping to fight for ONE FC in December but no news so far.
Can you tell us a bit about the places you have grown up in and where your parents come from as I heard you had a pretty diverse background?
I was born in Laie, Hawaii, lived there for two years, then moved to Kathmandu,Nepal where my dad is from and lived there for one year. Then moved to Malaysia where my mom is from. I grew up here in Malaysia, lived here for 12 years and went to a public school where I learned Malay and Mandarin. When I was 15 my brother and I got sent to the States where we finished high school. I also did a year of college in Hawaii before returning to Malaysia.
Are you going to carry on training after this fight or will you be taking a break?
I’m taking a few days off, going to hit it hard again and get ready for my next opponent.
PHOTO CREDIT – ONE FC