“He has heavy hands, but his entire game is limited and come EFC76, I will exploit all the failures on his stand-up and ground game and come home with the win.”
These are the words of a man who stepped in on short notice to replace Luke Michael in a welterweight match-up at Menlyn Maine, Pretoria this coming weekend.
The rising star that is Michael disappointingly dislocated his knee in training, which ruled him out to continue his contendership for the title at the finale of EFC2018.
That gave two-time title contender Da Rocha a chance to step in and shake off that dejection following his failure to secure the interim welterweight title in his loss to Gunther Kalunda at EFC74 at Carnival City.
An opportunity that could reboot the Brazilian jiu-jitsu warrior’s chances of remaining close to title conversations.
“You have to be careful anyway facing someone that has KO power because any mistake can be fatal,” says Da Rocha of Seabie (6-4) who is one tough go-forward customer with pin-point aggression.
Despite Jose having the reach advantage, Seabi is a schooled veteran who is no stranger to breaking the line of defence and once he catches you, it could be a “long” night for his opponent.
“I’m going in there with complete respect for what he can do and complete confidence that I can exploit all the failures,” Da Rocha says.
“To me, the win is what matters most. If I can knock him out it will be great, if I can submit him it will be great. Whatever I see in front of me I’m gonna take.
“I pushed too hard from the start in my fight against Gunther. I shouldn’t have rushed things. I didn’t take the high altitude (on the Highveld) into consideration and ended up paying for it. I should have relied more on my stand up and focused on trying to knock him out instead of grappling with him.
“But merits to Kalunda on his performance and durability. I didn’t think he’d be able to survive on the ground as he did.”
This man has spoken countless times about wanting a rematch with double EFC champion Dricus du Plessis after taking a title shot on short notice at EFC59 and confirmed that he would like to fight Kalunda again, too.
“I want that rematch, I want the title. I want to rematch Dricus as well. I want to show everyone I’m the best fighter in the division and to be the champion. I only fought once this year and the lack of activity hurt me a little bit. The more active we are the better we are,” added the Brazilian.@juliankiewietz