Ky Hollenbeck will look to continue to cement his name in the international Muay Thai scene when he takes on Aegpracha Meenayothin on August 18th at Push Kick Promotions “Thailand vs. The Americas”. Hollenbeck has made his name by beating some the world top fighters and looks to continue the trend when he steps into the ring with the man known as “Hitman”. Ky took some time from his busy schedule to answer a few questions about the upcoming fight.
MTA: Big fight coming up on August 18th as you take on Aegpracha Meenoytin. This fight was being talked about at last years Push Kick event. How has preparation been going?
Ky: Preparation is going really good. I’ve had a lot of really good guys to train with that are helping me get ready. Mike Mananquil has been working a lot with me because he is preparing for K-1 so we get to push each other. Also Kru Sam has been working with me on some new weapons to help me deal with the southpaw style. I’ve also had a ton of great left handed training partners helping me out.
MTA: You have probably stood out more than any other American fighter because you have taken on some of the best from around the world and beaten them. A lot of people tend to think that Aegpracha might be too much for you, what do you have to say to the doubters?
Ky: I love being in the position of the underdog. People continue to doubt and I’m fine with that. It just gives me opportunity to prove some people wrong again. Aegpracha is a tough dude so people aren't wrong in thinking this fight will be hard, but I would never take a fight that I thought I couldn't win and this one is no different. In the end it'll come down to who wants it more, and I’m gonna make sure I leave it all in the ring.
MTA: Aegpracha is known for his aggressive style and likes to move forward and press his opponents and you are known for your aggressive style and pressing your opponents. Do you feel that the fighter that makes the other move backwards will likely end up winning the fight?
Ky: I think this fight will be a war of attrition. The winner with be the one willing to push themselves harder. Like you said we both like to push the pace, we both hit hard, we both move forward but we both aren't one dimensional. Moving forward isn't the key to victory in this fight but I don't see either of us taking too many steps backward.
MTA: You are also scheduled to be in the Glory Final 8 in early November are you looking at this fight as good preparation for that tournament? You will have to beat the likes of Giorgio Petrosyan, Robin Van Roosmalen and Albert Kraus to win the Glory crown.
Ky: Honestly I'm not even thinking about the Glory tournament right now. Right now I’m focused on this fight and what I have to do on the 18th. The Glory fight will be there when this fight is over, but I am excited for this fight and all my energy is going into making this fight the best fight possible.
MTA: Not looking past Aegpracha, but if you could pick your opponent for the first round of the Glory Final 8, who would you like to be matched up against?
Ky: Again I haven't really given it much thought because of the fight on the 18th, but really the 7 other guys in the tournament are all top guys so getting to fight any of them is gonna be awesome. The three you mentioned would probably be my top 3 only because I would wanna fight them at their best without any injuries from the other fights.
MTA: Any predictions for the fight against Aegpracha?
Ky: You know I dont predict wins or knock outs or any of that, but I do predict a war and that’s what I’m planning for.
MTA: Your teammate Michael Mananquil is in the K-1 Max US tournament, will World Team USA be bringing two big tournament wins this year, one from you and one form Michael?
Ky: God willing man, haha. I know that we both have the skills to do it so I have no doubt in my mind that that's a possibility.
MTA: Any parting words for you supporters Ky?
Ky: I wanna thank everyone for the support. My teammates, my Kru, my family, my sponsors: (Savage Fight Wear, Nazuki Fight Gear, Triumph United, Ryu), the Can't Stop Crazy Crew, and all the fans and members of the USA Muay Thai scene. I promise that I’m gonna give everything I have to give on the 18th. So come to Pomona and help cheer me on.