TARIK “The Tank” Khbabez is itching to show his martial arts skills once again.
The Dutch-Moroccan superstar faces KLF World Champion Roman Kryklia for the inaugural ONE Light Heavyweight Kickboxing World Title at ONE: AGE OF DRAGONS on Saturday, 16 November.
Khbabez is glad that he did not have to wait too long for this chance.
“It’s a dream come true. I have been working and training so hard for this, and now it’s my time to show the world that I’m the best,” the 27-year-old striking sensation said.
The Arj Trainingen standout returns to the global stage in fine form. He is 4-0 in ONE Championship, scoring knockouts over Alain Ngalani and Ibrahim El Bouni in 2018.
He picked up where he left off last year – continuing his streak of wins with hard-earned decision wins over Anderson Silva and Andrei Stoica.
Now he is looking to make it 5-0 inside the Cadillac Arena in Beijing, China against a familiar name.
The two swapped leather in the 2015 SUPERKOMBAT Heavyweight World Grand Prix Final in Bucharest, Romania, and “The Tank” earned the unanimous decision victory to capture the tournament crown.
Both martial artists have evolved since then, but Khbabez is sure he still holds the advantage over his 28-year-old opponent.
“It was a tournament, and I stood up to him in the final. As everybody could see, the victory was mine. I fought how I was supposed to fight and stuck to my game plan,” he said.
“I have grown in experience and technique since then, and this has been showing in my latest fights. I have the right people around me who train me, and they know what is good [for me] to improve myself.”
Ending the year with a prized possession around his waist will sum up his career in ONE Championship perfectly.
“[Winning the World Title] would be the crowning [achievement] of my hard work and dedication. It’s everything I have been aiming for. It will show the world I’m the best light heavyweight champion.”