Jenelyn Olsim On Surprise Entry Into Atomweight GP: ‘I Will Give Everything I Have’

·2 min read

Opportunities like the one Jenelyn Olsim got earlier this week do not come often, so expect the Filipina to take full advantage of it come Friday, 29 October, at ONE: NEXTGEN.

Olsim is now part of the ONE Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix semifinals and will enter the Circle to take on Ritu “The Indian Tigress” Phogat after her opponent – Itsuki “Android 18” Hirata – had to withdraw due to non-COVID related fevers.

“I never expected to be in this position in such a short time. But all I know is that I trained as hard as I can, I grabbed every opportunity that ONE has given me, and now here I am,” Olsim said ahead of her semifinal showdown with Phogat.

“I’m really grateful for the opportunities, and I’m even more motivated. This wouldn’t be possible without the people around me.”

Those people will push her to try to succeed against surging Phogat, who has all the momentum going into this bout. After all, she came from behind to take out Meng Bo, a tournament favorite, with her grit and determination.

Olsim will have to find a way to hurdle Phogat’s drive.

“I believe wrestling is her biggest asset, but I think I can handle that. I want to prove that I am not just some alternate. And when it comes to wrestling, I think I can grapple with her,” Olsim said.

Skills aside, Olsim’s also banking on her mental fortitude, as she knows she’ll need it against one of the most feared wrestlers in the atomweight division.

“I am very confident in myself, I trust myself, my training, my coach, and my gym. I believe I can beat anyone they give me. I’ll [just] accept every fight that they offer. I’m very motivated and focused right now. I want to win,” Olsim said.

“I’m excited and happy. Sure, there’s a little pressure being in the Grand Prix – and I am fighting Ritu. I like her. I was inspired by her movie ‘Dangal,’ so there’s a little pressure, but I am more excited.”

She’ll have to put her respect and admiration for Phogat to the side come Friday night if she wants to advance to the final of the Grand Prix.

“I believe in the saying, ‘Don’t leave it to the judges,’” Olsim added. “I will give everything I have. I will do everything to finish the game. It’s either a submission or knockout.”

Catch all the action at ONE: NEXTGEN on the ONE Super App or meWATCH at 8:30 p.m. SGT on Friday, 29 October.

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