Jorgen “the Last Viking” Kruth is the featured “Meet the Fighter” of the day. He faces France’s Cyrille Diabate on the prelim card of the UFC in Sweden. While Kruth may not need much of an introduction for those following martial arts in Scandinavia, here is an introduction for those looking at the prelim card on April 14.
Jorgen “the Last Viking” Kruth (5-0 Overall, 0-0 UFC), Sweden
Swedish kickboxing legend Jorgen Kruth is one of the many UFC debutants on the UFC on Fuel 2 card. 37 year old striker has been fighting for almost 25 years having fought his first Muay Thai bouts in the late 80’s. In kickboxing Kruth holds the record of 71-14-2 with wins over highly regarded Stefan Leko and Francois Botha in K-1. Kruth has also professional boxing bouts under his belt.
“I have been fighting in Judo, Taekwondo, Savate, amateur and professional boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. So far I have been fighting in all of the biggest organizations, and with my fight in the UFC, my career seems to become complete.” – Jorgen Kruth
Besides striking Kruth has trained different grappling arts on the side since he was 10 years old. Vast experience in different combat sports obviously helped him in the transition to MMA. Kruth fought his first MMA bout in April of 2009 and followed by two additional bouts for the year. After taking two year hiatus away from the sport Kruth came back in 2011 with two successful fights in Swedish promotions. In his latest bout in November of 2011 Kruth scored a technical knockout in the first round over Japanese Yusuke Kawaguchi (13-5) at the Rumble of the Kings 6 event. The fight was at heavyweight but for his UFC debut Kruth drops down to more fitting light heavyweight division.
Kruth’s biggest weapons are naturally related to his extensive experience from the highest level of Muay Thai and Kickboxing. The long limbed (188cm) Swede is a terror on the feet. His versatile striking style can be described as the Dutch style kickboxing where hand strikes are used more than in traditional Muay Thai.
Kruth is also competent in the clinch with skills from his Muay Thai background and leverage from his long frame. His grappling has improved nicely over the years but there are still some holes in his game, especially in defensive wrestling. Like with many older fighters, conditioning might be the biggest issue for Kruth when he meets high level competition in the UFC.
The Swede has been training locally in Stockholm at VBC.