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Alex Roberts Balances Life, Career Ahead Of ONE Fight Night 17 Main Event

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Alex Roberts took home the WBC Heavyweight Muay Thai World Title in October. The victory caught the eye of ONE Championship officials, who signed the Australian slugger for the main event of ONE Fight Night 17 with a chance for gold. On December 8, “The Viking” meets Roman Kryklia for the inaugural ONE Heavyweight Muay Thai World Championship.

But Roberts’ path toward Muay Thai glory did not start when he was a youngster, despite his best efforts. A fan of action films, Roberts was put into martial arts classes but was quickly pulled by his parents. He would not revisit the inside of a gym until his mid-20s.

“At 24, just playing around, I started Muay Thai. I was probably just getting into a bit too much trouble out and about. I felt like this was a sport that I could be very good at, and it’s a great outlet to get some of that young male ego out of the system. I went into the gym, and as soon as I walked into Synergy and Thai Boxing Pit, it was love at first sight,” Roberts told ONE.

That love has shown in his quick progression in the sport. The 34-year-old’s natural abilities have shined and taken him to the global stage to compete for ultimate glory. Still concerned, his parents have come around to his gift for the sport.

“My family all thought it was a pretty natural progression. My parents were a little bit worried about me. They still are. So, they don’t actually come to the flights because they can’t bear to see it. But they’re always there supporting at home. My sisters and the rest of my family have all been great. They come to every fight,” the 34-year-old remarked.

Roberts’ skills do not reside fully inside the ring. At the same time he was honing his craft as a striker, the Aussie was learning to become a physiotherapist. His career outside of the ring is a great benefit to achieving his goal of becoming a World Champion by keeping him in the best shape possible.

Managing his careers, Roberts finds little time for other recreation. Muay Thai is his passion; turning it away for something else was never an option. On December 8, “The Viking” has his chance to validate his decisions with a life-altering victory.

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“I’ve set up life pretty good. I start early at 6 a.m. Work for three hours, train for two hours in the morning, work for another three or four hours, eat some food, then go to training again in the evening for three hours. It doesn’t leave much spare time to do other things during the week. But it’s got me to where I am, and I’m pretty stoked with it. Not once [have I thought about stopping fighting just to do physiotherapy]. If I didn’t have that, that’d definitely be a massive, massive hole in my life,” Roberts stated.

On the heels of his WBC title win, Roberts feels this is the perfect time to get the call from ONE. He is in peak condition and ready to shock the world in his promotional debut. While many may doubt his ability to stymie the towering Ukrainian, the 34-year-old is supremely confident his reign as heavyweight king will begin in Bangkok.

“I’m still very, very fit from the last fight since it was only a month ago. I’m always fit, always ready. So, I thought, ‘This is perfect.’ We’ll get one more in before the year is over and come home with a nice bonus for Christmas. I want to go out there and win this belt, then defend it. I would love to just fight in ONE and completely clear out the division and then retire on top,” Roberts said. 

ONE Fight Night 17 airs live on Prime Video on Friday, December 8. The action begins at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST. The event is free for all Amazon Prime subscribers based in the U.S. and Canada.

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