Ashiek Ajim taking it one fight at a time heading into CES 69 title fight

When looking ahead to his 2022, bantweight Ashiek Ajim feels is most important to look back first and how the past will help build his future.

In particular, Ajim looks at the past two years as a rebuilding of himself and a springboard for what he could be bigger succeses in the years to come.

“2020 was my first pro loss, then going into 2021 I had an injury early in the year that put me out for a little bit, so my first fight wasn’t until August,” Ajim told MMAWeekly.com. “The fight in August was real big because sometimes you question yourself, and sometimes winning that fight was big just to get my confidence back after the loss. Moving into this next fight I have a bit of confidence moving forward.”

Having shifted his focus to fighting of late has also helped make Ajim expecting big things in the future.

“Before I was working a regular job and you don’t really see much progression from day to day, so doing this (now) seeing the progression from day to day I want to be the best fighter possible in every area,” said Ajim. “I feel like from fight to fight I definitely make big improvements.”

On June 17 in Lincoln, Rhode Island, Ajim (5-1) will look to add a title to his list of accomplishments when he takes on Azjavkhlan Baatar (8-6) in the 135 championship main event of CES 69.

“Baatar is another guy who has a decent amount of fights more than I have,” Ajim said. “He’s fought decent competition. I expect a tough fight.

“He’s been finished a few times, but I’m not taking him lightly. I expect every fight to be a hard three, five-minute rounds, and this will be five, five-minute rounds, so I expect it to go all five rounds. From what he brings to the table, I expect for him to look for grappling more, and he might not want to exchange as much on the feet.”

Having rebounded off his sole career loss, Ajim is looking forward to continuing his current winning streak and take the opportunities as they come.

“I can’t say that (taking the next step) is not in the back of my head, but I do take it one fight at a time,” said Ajim.

“I do plan things out but I don’t look too far ahead. Nothing is set in stone. I’m not in any rush. Of course I do want to make it to a higher promotion, but I just like to take it one fight a time and then see what’s next on the horizon.”