Andi Vrtačić always accepts any challenge he is offered and he aces it. He proved this on several occasions and the latest example is his match at FFC Night of Champions in December last year when he stepped up on two days’ notice to replace champ Pavel Zhuravlev and defeated Holland’s Clyde Brunswijk. It was with this match that Andi attracted a lot of attention and thus the FFC called him back to fight in their ring this time in middleweight division against champ Denis Marjanović.
This Croatian fighter started his sport career in football but then when he was 17 he stepped into Zelg Galešić’s gym, joined Trojan Free Fighters team and never looked back. He trained MMA for two years but then decided to focus on kickboxing where he scored only wins in past three years (6-0, 3-0 FFC).
Vrtačić first recalled his last FFC match at the Zagreb Arena.
“I got a call two days before the fight. Zelg called me and said he had an offer for a fight with Surinamese fighter Clyde Brunswijk as the champion Zhuravlev got injured. I was so happy, I did not hesitate for a second and I accepted the offer,” recalled Vrtačić but explained that his brilliant performance in the Croatian capital was no exception: “
“I’m normally a fighter who always strives for attractiveness and I want the audience to enjoy my matches. I can say this match will be no different. For my part, there will certainly be lots of fireworks and madness in the ring! The audience will surely enjoy my performance.”
“He surely is a tough fighter. He is much more experienced than me and he has some 50 matches under his belt. But I’m sure I will win. I will have to move more, go in and out and throw fast combinations.”
What do you think about Marjanović in his title match?
“He fought well, but that match was pretty tight. I’m OK with him as opponent because he is very static and I’m sure he will not respond well to my speed.”
What did you learn from his opponents’ mistakes?
“Judging from what I’ve seen, he scored his wins over guys who were pretty static. I think my style will not suit him because I can throw from every angle. I will move a lot and I think this will bring me a win.”
Pula, Croatia, could get two champions in one evening
Andi’s teammate Ivan Bilić will also fight the same evening in Athens. He is to fight in a title match against Holland’s Eyevan Danenberg.
“We train together and help each other in sparring. Marko Čalić is a pro boxer and he helps us too. The atmosphere in the gym is just top,” Vrtačić described Pula’s Trojan Free Fighters gym that we have a lot of reasons to celebrate if everything goes according to plan in Athens.
“There will be a celebration for sure and I hope that both me and my teammate Bilić will stay healthy and will not sustain injuries. Nothing else can stop us on our way to the top.”
Waiting for big matches
In case he defeats Marjanović, Vrtačić would not mind fighting again in light heavyweight division and having champion Pavel Zhuravlev as opponent.
“I will accept any opponent without and hesitation and I would be glad to get a shot like that.“
Message for Marjanović
“I hope he will be ready because I will put him through hell. This will be the toughest match of his career.”
Vrtačić and Marjanović are set to fight this March 11 in Athens, Greece. They are only one of the many reasons why FFC 28 Greece vs. Rest of the World must not be missed!