Navajo Stirling has sights set on UFC

By Te Ao Toa

Navajo Stirling (Te Whānau-ā-Apanui) is a young up-and-coming Māori fighter who now fights out of Auckland's City Kickboxing.

A two-time King in the Ring champion, 24-year-old Stirling fought Australian Jessie Astill for a world kickboxing title on Friday.

With his sights set on making it into the UFC, the WKBF heavyweight title fight was Stirling's chance to show he has what it takes.

He spoke to Te Ao Toa in the build-up to his fight.

"It's a big title for me. Can't wait to throw hands. So let's go," Stirling told Te Ao Toa a few short hours before the fight.

Stirling says his two City Kickboxing trainers fill him with confidence.

"It's awesome to be a part of and I feel real confident having them as my third pair of eyes.

"When you get to the high professional (level), you need those close guys in your corner to be able to call other shots you're not seeing and make those calculated reads.

"That's why we're elite," Stirling says.  

WATCH Highlights of Navajo Stirling's title fight