Props: Vecernji.hr (For the translation of the article click below -- thanks once again to UFCmania reader "Loken" for the assist.)
Mirko trains hard for every fight, his upcoming fight with Brazilian fighter Gonzaga is no exception. He has been training for weeks now in his private gym with two-time BBJ world champion Marcio Corletta, and recently he was joined by Olympic judo gold medalist Pawel Nastula.
Just pronouncing the name of Pawel Nastula causes respect in all judokas. The man is a two-time world champion (1995 and 1997) and also an Olympic gold medalist from Atlanta, 1996. During his prime he won 312 times in 1,220 days. His manager Michal Szymanski says no one has accomplished anything like that in judo.
Even great sport figure like him is impressed by Croatian gladiator:
"I have been participating in MMA for two years now, in which Mirko is the best, so I wanted to train with him. I can learn a lot from him, and if he also learns something from me, I will be honored. I've never met a greater professional than Mirko. He is completely focused on training for every second of the session."
Nastula's style suits Mirko, because he is trying to throw him or take him down, the same thing Gonzaga will try to do.
"His attacks exhaust me, but that's the best way to get specific fitness," says Mirko, whose training partners constantly exchange in the ring, and he, although tired, doesn't back down against anyone.
Since Gonzaga is a BJJ artist, here is also Marcio Corletta, world champion in BJJ in years 2001 and 2004, and three-time vice-champion. To train with CroCop he left his position as supervisor of large fitness and fight club in Port Alegro. "Club is 1,000 square meters big and its now supervised by my brother, sister and mother, since for me its more important to be here.
Like Mirko's ex-training partner Fabricio Werdum, Marcio Corletta trains Mirko in ground fighting.
"Mirko promised to come to Port Alegre in Brazil because he wants to earn black belt in BBJ, and I want to show him origin of club Internazionale, world football champions, of which I am a passionate fan."
Even tough Dinamo (Football club), for whom five Brazilians play, is just few miles away, Marcio hasn't met any of players. "I know Eduardo (Brazilian born Croatian football player), since every bodies talks about him when I say I am from Brazil. He is synonym for my country in Zagreb."