The next ONE FC event takes place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on March 13, 2015. Indonesia-based and trained Casey Suire takes on his toughest opponent yet in Mark Striegl.
It’s not often one hears of an American training MMA in Indonesia, and even rarer when someone actually began their MMA career in the Southeast Asian country. Suire is that man. He’s racked up a comfortable 5-0 with 4 chokes and a KO fighting in Southeast Asia, with his most recent wins being in ONE FC as first round finishes of Raymond Tan and Stephen Langdown.
Aside from his record and those two fights on tape, there isn’t much else out there about Suire. Therefore, ASIA MMA caught up with Suire just before fight week to find out what makes him tick.
ASIA MMA: How does a guy from Lafayette, Louisiana end up in Indonesia?
Suire: I wanted to see the other side of the world. I worked in Angola, Africa for three years, and when the opportunity came up to move to Indonesia, I went all in and doubled down! I’ve been in Indonesia for eight years. I work in a major oil and gas company as a manager.
ASIA MMA: When and how did you start MMA? Most people probably wouldn’t expect that’s where an American would get his start in the sport.
Suire: About 5 1/2 years ago, I actually started at of boredom! I was living in Balikpapan in Borneo while working in the oil field and met a kickboxer through a mutual friend. I met up with him to try a session. I was horrible! And, funny thing about that is that me and the kickboxer downloaded Bas Rutten videos and learned BJJ for 2 years that way!
ASIA MMA: So now what belt are you?
Suire: I’m a blue belt. I had my first amatuer fight 3 months after I started training, it was pathetic. It frustrates me to watch the video. It was a Draw (felt like a loss) but it was what I needed to motivate me until now.
ASIA MMA: How old are you now?
Suire: Just turned 38. I know, way too old to be fighting, at least that’s what I always hear. But starting at 33, I haven’t taken much damage, so as long as I feel healthy, why not!
I am who I am, and after April 24th, I wont be an unknown anymore.
ASIA MMA: Are you always a daredevil?
Suire: Yeah, pretty much! [laughs] The rush of fighting is incredible. Why use drugs? Fighting is the best high ever!
ASIA MMA: So you’re against PEDs I take it?
Suire: 1000%. I had my first pro boxing match one and a half months after I started training boxing. It was surreal. I won by TKO in the third round. That was a good high! [laughs]
ASIA MMA: Was that before MMA?
Suire: I had a couple of amateur MMA fights, then I couldnt get anyone to fight me. It was kind of weird because I still didn’t know shit. I went home for vacation for a month and gained 8 kgs. When I got back to Jakarta, my friend suggested I try boxing with the former Indonesian National boxing coach. After a week, he asked me to try a boxing match, I said sure, why not? Then the next day he came in and said in 6 weeks I would fight six rounds at Indosair Studio. I FREAKED! Then the following week it was moved up a week, and lucky enough it worked out.
ASIA MMA: So, what do you do for FUN?
Suire: I try to play guitar and ukulele, but I’m not very good. I love the ocean, especially diving.
ASIA MMA: Do you cave dive or deep sea or anything crazy like that?
Suire: I’ve done some night and wreck dives, but 100 meters is the deepest I’ve gone.
ASIA MMA: “But”? As if you want to go deeper?!
Suire: Yeah! [laughs] It makes you feel drunk. I love eating new exotic foods too, so cutting weight SUCKS! I cut 13 kgs in 10 days for my first ONE FC fight. It was miserable.
The rush of fighting is incredible. Why use drugs? Fighting is the best high ever!
ASIA MMA: What’s the strangest food you’ve tried that you actually like?
Suire: I like durian and bat is not too bad. I might have eaten rat, not sure. [laughs] They said it was chicken, but the bones were strange. I’ve eaten python, frog, bat, but I refuse to eat cat or dog. I wouldn’t eat horse either.
ASIA MMA: So, back to the matter at hand, who are you training with for this fight? The press release mentioned Fransino Tirta.
Suire: I am actually training with another ONE FC fighter, Andrew Leone and his brother Anthony at their two gyms, Jakarta Muay Thai MMA and Bali Muay Thai MMA. And even a bit with Niko Han at Synergy MMA. Fransino’s new gym is too far for me to still train with him. Fransino was my first real coach and mentor in Indonesia. I would not be at this point in my career without him. He is a beast. I would like to see him fight Mark as well.
ASIA MMA: Why did you take the fight against Mark Striegl? It’s kind of like you’re an unknown who may have a pretty strong arsenal, rather than a stepping stone, but he is a lot more experienced.
Suire: I may be unknown to most, but I’m no stepping stone. If Mark is looking at a title shot and not taking this fight seriously, it may cost him. I took this fight because I’m 38 years old – fighters have a shelf life – and it’s time to man up and see what I’m made of. Testing myself against a great fighter like Mark is what it’s all about. Win or lose I will give everything I have in the cage to earn his respect.
I just want to give credit to the team preparing me for the biggest fight of my life. I am who I am, and after April 24th, I wont be an unknown anymore.