When a fighter comes out of a bout with a loss, there is a magnitude of excuses that can follow. The fight could have been stopped too early, a mysterious injury could have reared its ugly head or a fight camp could have been interrupted with illness or personal issues.

All of those could justify a loss for a fighter and rightfully so. However, Thanh “Aladdin” Vu, knows where he went wrong in his last fight for ONE FC. In the case of his loss, it’s not about making an excuse to feel better, but rather it’s more of a “heading back to the drawing board” scenario and admitting that April 5 just wasn’t his night.

“My last fight didn’t really turn out the way that I wanted it to,” Vu admitted in an exclusive interview with The MMA Corner. “I think I was just way too nervous. There was a massive crowd and I am really still getting used to it. I mean, going into a fight, I would have never expected to have guys like Jens Pulver cageside watching me. It was all a little bit overwhelming. It was a good lesson learnt, though, and I think that next time things will be completely different.”

Vu (R) throws a right hand (ONE FC)

It would be easy for Vu to get disheartened in what was just his fifth professional fight, but he knows that he fought a top-level fighter from a top gym in the Asian region. Vu plans to correct his mistakes and walk out of his next fight with his hand raised. He’ll do so with the help of some brand new coaches and a new insight on how to tackle a fight.

“I think that I did alright up against a tough opponent,” he said. “I was a little bit too reactive in the fight, so I have been working on that now and next time I plan to be the one that dictates where the fight goes. We have brought in a coach dedicated to wrestling and a boxing coach who won a bronze medal in the 2010 Commonwealth Games. We have been working with really high-level guys, and I can feel that I have gotten a lot better in such a short amount of time. We are just keeping the weight down so that when the call comes I am ready to take a fight.”

Fighting for a high-caliber international promotion like ONE FC is a completely different experience from fighting on Australian soil. It’s an experience that Vu is never going to forget and, equally, one that he is looking forward to going through again.

“It’s an incredible experience,” he exclaimed. “You get over there and everything is sorted for you. Getting to travel is great because I don’t really get to travel too much. It’s just a whole different experience fighting for [ONE FC]. Everything is planned out that we need to do, and it’s always go, go, go.

Vu (L) (ONE FC)

“It was a little funny when we were going through a shopping mall and people were asking for photos and my autograph and stuff. Glenn [Taylor-Smith, one of Vu’s coaches] was giving me a hard time because nobody really knows who you are in Australia, but over there [in Singapore] it was crazy. I did interviews with Fox Asia and everything. It was really a whole new experience for me.”

Taking some time to reflect is a key in growing to become a better fighter. From his performance in Singapore, Vu knows that whilst he could have done better, there is still a lot that he has gained from the fight.

“I don’t think [the loss] is anything to look down on,” he explained. “If anything, it makes me hungrier for the next win. A fight is a fight, and anything can happen in there. That night wasn’t my night and I know what I can do better next time. I think I showed that I can take a tough fight. Kevin [Belingon] had four times the experience to what I do and I think that really helped [him].

“I just plan to bounce back stronger. I was disappointed with myself, but have learnt from the experience. I am just waiting on that call [from ONE FC] now so that I can show that I can compete at that level, and I’m looking forward to getting another opportunity to fight in front of millions of fans.”

After learning a valuable lesson from his last fight, Vu is ready and waiting for the chance to show exactly what he has come up with on his “drawing board.” It only takes one fight for a fighter to redeem themselves after a loss, and that is exactly what he has in mind as he awaits his next chance to shine on the world stage.

Thanh would like to thank MMA Factory, Rock Hard Supplements and his team at Martial Arts & Development, along with his coaches, Glenn and Dave. Follow Vu on Twitter: @thanh_man

Top Photo: Thanh Vu (ONE FC)