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“I’ll Become a Champion in the Toughest Competition”

Posted April. 07, 2005 23:39,   


“As a man, when the time comes, I want to fight against the strongest fighters in the toughest arena.”

Judo star Yoon Dong-sik (33, former KRA trainer, photo), who made his debut in the Japanese Fighting Championship, “Pride FC,” noted about his dream of winning the championship title.

At the press conference held in Seoul on April 7, Yoon Dong-sik said that he wants to compete against the Japanese heroes of Mixed Matial Arts (MMA), Kazushi Sakuraba and Hidehiko Yoshida, and that he could aspire to the championship title if he makes it to the quarter-finals.

Yoon Dong-sik will have his debut match with a former wrestling player, Sakuraba, at the “Pride FC” Middleweight Grand Prix Tournament, to be held at the Osaka Dome on April 23.

Regarding his quarter-final match, it is highly likely that Yoon Dong-sik will fight against Yoshida, the gold medalist in judo at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.

Yoon Dong-sik, who was called the “unlucky star” after failing to win a gold medal at the Olympics despite his remarkable record of 40 consecutive victories in the mid-1990s, has recently announced his advance into the “Pride FC,” a rival Fighting Championships to another fighting competition, “K-1.”

The “Pride FC” made allowed Yoon to enter the competition directly in the sub-quarter-final round, without going through qualifying round for newcomers. The direct advance into the tournament game is an exceptional treatment, which even one of the top fighters in “Pride FC,” Wanderlei Silva (Brazil), didn’t receive.

Yoon Dong-sik showed his confidence by saying, “I have trained with elite junior players of the KRA, up until recently. I also took good care of my body, maintaining the weight I used to have. Though I’m weak in striking skills, I think I’m better than Sakuraba and Yoshida, in terms of picking and grappling. I decided to become a fighter in Pride FC after seeing Yoshida achieve repeated victories.”

Won-Hong Lee bluesky@donga.com