KSW 75 Preview; Ruchała v Stasiak, Narkun returns

The monthly KSW show is upon us again with a rare Friday night show. The action will take place in the southern Polish city of Nowy Sącz, close to the border with Slovakia. A sold-out audience of approximately 4000 will witness eight fights on the night in the Amfiteatr Parku Strzeleckiego on the Dunajec river. KSW 75 is set to be an interesting night of fights. 

There will be a hometown favourite in the main event. Robert Ruchała (7-0) is leading the charge of KSW’s next generation of stars. Having already amassed a 4-0 record in the company, he’s beginning to knock on the door of a title shot and is fifth in the rankings. The 24-year-old trains out of Grappling Kraków in Poland’s former capital. From a skills perspective, Ruchała is already a very well-rounded fighter. The Pole is an accomplished grappler with an excellent armbar and on the feet he’s good at picking people apart from range with clean, accurate shots. Between amateur and pro, he’s packed a lot of experience into his young MMA career. He’ll need it against Damian Stasiak (13-8). The Łódź man is from the old school of fighting. The 32-year-old is a black belt in karate and an expert in submissions. He excels in triangles, both off his back and the head and arm variety. The number four ranked featherweight went 2-4 in the UFC and is currently 2-2 under the KSW banner. This is a fascinating battle between an established name and another who’s destined for the top. The question is, is it Ruchała’s time already?

Michal Martínek (10-3) had a successful KSW debut last time out in Toruń, beating Filip Stawowy by decision in a stand-up battle. “Blackbeard” trains out of Prague in Reinders MMA and has fought in top European promotions ACA and Oktagon. The Czech won the title in Oktagon, earning him a shot on Dana White’s Contender Series where he came up short to Rodrigo Nascimento. The 32-year-old mostly utilises his striking game. Daniel Omielańczuk (25-13-1) is a man who made it to the big show, going 4-5 in the UFC. After parting ways with the company, the Pole went on to compete in ACA, going 6-4. The 40-year-old had a hiccup on his KSW debut, getting caught in an Achilles lock early against Ricardo Prasel. Omielańczuk is a solid wrestler who usually lets his striking do the talking nowadays. Both lads are likely to want to settle this on the feet.

Tomasz Narkun (18-5) reigned over KSW’s light heavyweight division for just over six years until losing the strap to Ibragim Chuzhigaev in January. The Berserker Team man is an elite grappler with a wide array of submission attacks in his locker. The Stargard Szczeciński native is lethal with guillotines, triangles, rear naked chokes, you name it. On the feet, his knees are lethal, and he has power in his hands. The 32-year-old is one of the best to ever do it at European level. Luis Henrique Da Silva (18-8) is a former UFC fighter who went 2-4. The Brazilian is an exciting striker with a kill or be killed attitude, winning five of his last six via knockout. His aggression can be his downfall at times as well and he’ll need to make sure it doesn’t lead to him falling into one of Narkun’s traps. Big fight for both men with title ramifications. 

Adam Soldaev (6-1) is a man with a lot of talent who just needs a little bit of luck to get into a rhythm after struggling for activity of late. The WCA Warsaw man has only fought a couple of times in the last few years, both impressive first round knockouts. Back in his amateur days, he was finishing guys for fun with submissions, usually by armbar. At pro level, he’s been destroying people with his kickboxing. Soldaev’s fight IQ is very high and he throws with great technique, patience and savage counter shots. The man is a menace everywhere. Oleksii Polischuck (10-3) is the man tasked with stopping the hype train. The Ukrainian is currently training out of Poland and is a very solid wrestler with a panache for triangles and armbars. The 26-year-old has a lot of experience on the local scene with EFM, FEN and Armia amongst the promotions he’s fought in, winning eight of his last nine. Most notably he knocked out Sylwester Miller for the Armia 135lb championship in his last outing. A tough man and a tough test for Soldaev.

Another light heavyweight bout takes place earlier in the evening. Adam Tomasik (6-1) has been a solid addition to the promotion, going 1-1 to date. The Krosno man is a good all-rounder. He has an eclectic submission game, attacking limbs from head to toe. On the feet, he’s a solid kickboxer with knockout power. In short, Tomasik is a man who generally doesn’t leave it up to the judges. He’ll face a man after his own heart in Mădălin Pîrvulescu (4-0). The Romanian comes in from Heroes Fight League and has finished all his opponents by first round knockout to date, including three within the first minute. They’ve captured lighting in a bottle for this matchup.

Yann Liasse (8-1) is an IMMAF veteran at amateur level and is the fighting pride of Luxembourg. The Streetsport man is an expert at taking the back and finishing with the rear naked choke. On the feet, he’s a flashy kickboxer who loves spinning manoeuvres. He’s 2-0 in KSW and has fought for Brave CF in the past. His only defeat was to the great Magomed Magomedov (the IMMAF/UAE Warriors/Brave CF fighter of that name). Adrian Gralak (5-0) is the latest WCA Warsaw prospect to join the ranks. The 25-year-old is a slick kickboxer with knockout power. The grappling is solid and getting better all the time. This will be his toughest test to date. A good chance for both men to make a mark in the lightweight division.

David Martinik (5-4) makes his return to the cage for his fourth promotional appearance. The Czech trains just over the border in Cieszyn, birthplace of Legendary Polish Power Jan Błachowicz. Martinik is a Tae Kwon Do black belt and is a tricky grappler. He’s got submissions and knockouts on his resume. Kamil Szkaradek (2-0) comes in from the Armia Fight Night promotion. This will be his biggest step up in opposition to date. The Kraków man is a good kickboxer with great timing and has a slick guillotine and armbar in his locker. These are a pair of high paced, all action bantamweights.

The ladies will open the card in the flyweight division. Petra Částková (6-4) is a 40-year-old Czech who is a decent striker and grappler. She has previously fought in Bellator. Adrianna Kreft (3-0) is another prospect that has come in from Armia Fight Night. The Tczew native is an aggressive striker with savage kicks. In the submission game, watch out for the guillotine and rear naked choke.

KSW 75 is live from 6pm Irish time on Friday and access can be purchased at KSWTV.com or on the ViaPlay subscription service in select countries.

Seán Denny is a Dublin man who writes mostly on the European scene, with a keen interest in the Irish, UK and Polish scenes in particular. Follow me on Twitter at @DennyRants.