UFC Vegas 42: Marc Diakiese wants to make up for lost time against Rafael Alves after setbacks

Marc Diakiese

Marc Diakiese will enter the octagon for the first time in a long while this Saturday when he takes on Rafael Alves at UFC Fight Night 197. 

It will end a frustrating wait to fight again for Diakiese, who was rather awkwardly left in limbo after Alves was forced to pull out of the original fight date in mid-August for undisclosed reasons.  

At 28, Diakiese is arguably in the athletic prime of his career right now. But 'Bonecrusher' hasn't fought since his loss to Rafael Fiziev in July 2020. 

And while the circumstances can't be helped, the former BAMMA lightweight champion admits he does have a bit of a chip on his shoulder heading into the clash this weekend. 

"Right now I'm kind of p----- off to be honest," Diakiese told GIVEMESPORT.

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"I feel like people aren't giving me the credit I deserve. I feel like people are trying to push these other guys and promote them and forget about what I've done and what I've achieved so it's frustrating in that sense.

"But I do believe I'm one of the best lightweights in the world and I'm ready to show what I can do.

"I'm not done by any stretch of the imagination. I'm 28, I've had 18 fights, and my losses only came in the UFC, so I'm learning in the UFC.

"I feel like everyone else had their time and my time is coming and I feel like this is it. 

"I will be remembered as one of the best fighters and I am still aiming for that belt and I'm going to get it."

Marc Diakiese will fight Rafael Alves on November 13

The pair received a 'Fight of the Night' bonus for their efforts, pocketing an extra $50,000 each in the process, but that loss prompted Diakiese to change just about every aspect of his training camp.

Diakiese, 28, left his native Britain in early September to do his first training camp abroad for several years in Sweden at Allstars Training Center. He has been busy working on his wrestling with the help of Khamzat Chimaev, the #3-ranked UFC welterweight.

But perhaps most importantly, he has finally found a place which he feels pushes the boundaries and tests him to his full potential. 

"The training there is totally different," he said.

Marc Diakiese in action against Dan Hooker

"If I train there there is no fighter that is beating me especially because of these incline sprints that they do. 

"And now you get Khamzat as well encouraging you saying, 'C'mon brother, this is championship s--- brother, keep going brother'.

"He's lifting heavy weights, so you've got to try and do the same, it makes me even more determined to be honest. 

"You need someone like that in the gym to compete with you, who tries to push you as well, it's very important, so I'm lucky in that regard.

"I'm happy where I am, I've got some great coaches there, I'm just trying to move forward and put on some great performances."

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And how does Diakiese envisage his comeback fight going?

"I'm going to finish him," he said. "I know my power, I know where my strengths are, I know how to move, so I'm really trying to implement that into my game where I show everything, mix it up a little bit. 

"I know I can wrestle, people haven't really seen my wrestling, I know I can strike, but my striking hasn't been used the way I wanted it to, so now is the time to show off my evolution as a fighter."

He added: "He's a great fighter, he's explosive, he does capoeira, all those crazy spins and stuff.

"I'm really looking forward to this fight because I knows he's going to bring it.

"My last fight, we actually took it easy with each other because we needed that 50 g's, so I'm hoping he's ready for what I'm going to throw at him. 

"I just hope he brings the same heat so I can get another bonus."

Watch Marc Diakiese in action against Rafael Alves at UFC FIGHT NIGHT®: HOLLOWAY vs. RODRIGUEZ on Saturday November 13, at a prime-time slot on BT Sport 2 from 7pm. Prelims are live on UFC Fight Pass from 6pm.

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