UFC welterweight Yoshiyuki Yoshida is just two days away from the biggest fight of his career. Although the little known Japanese fighter will only be making his second ever Octagon appearance, he currently holds an impressive 10-2 professional record. Yoshida will be headlining “UFC Fight Night 16 – UFC Fight for the Troops” on Wednesday against Josh Koscheck, a bout that almost didn’t happen.
“First of all, I would like to say thank you to Josh Koscheck for taking this fight,” Yoshida stated. “Ever since I was told that my next opponent is Koscheck, for the past two months or so, I have been training thinking about just fighting Koscheck. Physical strength, wrestling, and boxing – I believe, in those departments, Koscheck is better than me, so I have been working hard on that.”
Koscheck had originally signed on to face Yoshida months ago, however was offered an opportunity to face Thiago Alves at UFC 90 when Diego Sanchez was forced to pull out due to an injury. It was an opportunity that Koscheck couldn’t pass up.
Although Koscheck promised to compete on both cards, many thought that he would be too banged up after his fight with Alves to be able to make the quick turnaround to face Yoshida. However, Koscheck proved to be a man of his word, and is going to pull double duty with less than seven weeks rest.
“Ever since I signed with the UFC, I am ready to fight anybody. For me this is nothing but a huge opportunity,” said Yoshida.
Although Yoshida is well aware that most UFC fans don’t know who he is, he promises that they will come Wednesday.
“I really appreciate this opportunity UFC has created for me, but this fight is a headliner because Koscheck is a very popular fighter,” Yoshida commented. “And of course, he is one of the Top 10 welterweights in the world, and I am sure most people won’t even think about me winning this fight. But I am telling you this now, you are going to be surprised by the outcome of fight!”
Yoshida defeated War Machine at UFC 84 in his UFC debut. He knows that if he wants to stay with the world’s biggest MMA organization, he needs to keep winning.
“I know it’s going to be a tough fight. But I want to win and survive in this very deep UFC welterweight division,” Yoshida said.