sport news How Czech star Jiri Prochazka emerged as title contender for UFC 275 trends now

sport news How Czech star Jiri Prochazka emerged as title contender for UFC 275 trends now
sport news How Czech star Jiri Prochazka emerged as title contender for UFC 275 trends now

sport news How Czech star Jiri Prochazka emerged as title contender for UFC 275 trends now

Jiri Prochazka could become the Czech Republic's first UFC champion on Saturday night but the waves of that success would crash well beyond his homeland. 

The 29-year-old has the hallmarks of a superstar and very few fighters earn themselves a shot at the belt after just two outings at the big show. 

He is on the cusp of a new level of stardom but if anyone can be prepared for the wild world of fame and celebrity, it is Prochazka, who views himself as a modern day samurai. 

Jiri Prochazka admitted getting in fights as a youngster

He has since developed into one of the top UFC stars

Jiri Prochazka admitted he lived on the 'edge of morality' as a youngster (left) but has since dedicated his life to MMA and the craft around it 

Prochazka (right) knocked out Dominick Reyes (left) is his last fight to earn a title shot

Prochazka (right) knocked out Dominick Reyes (left) is his last fight to earn a title shot 

For all the bluff, bluster and trash talk keeping the wheels of the UFC spinning - the quiet man from Hostěradice has a different kind of allure. 

He lives his life by the strict code of Budisho - the rules by which ancient Japanese warriors held themselves to. 

Prochazka, like many professional fighters, began by scrapping on the streets and living, as he describes, 'on the edge of morality'. 

'When it came to my training my coach Jaroslav Hovezak gave me Five Rings,' he previously explained. 'It was an important moment because it gave me some rules to my life. 

'From this time I started to learn about Chinese culture, Japanese samurai ideas and (started) on a spiritual journey. The timing, the rhythm, how to start to use my true power.'

Prochazka has been inspired by The Book of Five Rings and lives by the code of Bushido

Prochazka has been inspired by The Book of Five Rings and lives by the code of Bushido

Written by the Japanese swordsman Miyamoto Musashi in the 17th century, The Book of Five Rings has been claimed to help martial artists in a variety of disciplines through a mixture of technical teachings and approaches to combat. 

He added: '[Bushido] is very simple rules which you can use for everything. It's about what you believe in, what you love, how you want to speak with other people. 

'It's about loyalty to, not your team, but loyalty to yourself to live by my truth, what I'm feeling inside. It's very simple, but these things are [the] strongest.'

That obsession with Asian culture is bound to help Prochazka feel right at home at UFC 275 this Saturday. Singapore plays host to the event and he'll have plenty of support against champion Glover Teixeira in the headline act. 

'With this body, with this mind, with this soul, with every breath I want to win. I'm ready for anything,' Prochazka said.

'I still find something new in Musashi's writings. This journey is endless - one can still move. We were born without anything and we will leave anyway. All we have left is a soul.'

The Czech Republic star would be the first fighter to win a UFC title from his country

The Czech Republic star would be the first fighter to win a UFC title from his country

But for all the talk of mind body and soul, it was in fact Tekken and the film 'Never Back

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