KSW World Heavyweight Champion Phil De Fries delivered an inspiring message following his victory at KSW 95.

His unanimous decision win against Augusto Sakai all but cemented De Fries as the longest reigning champion in the promotion’s history, a record to add to the plethora he has already collected whilst competing under the KSW banner including, most wins in title fights and most stoppages in title fights most title defences.

Post fight, De Fries spoke with the Polish media and after his victory and when asked how it felt to add this latest accolade to his resume, the 38-year-old expressed his desire to compete like KSW legend Mamed Khalidov and recognized the former Middleweight champion as the best to ever pull on the KSW gloves. He said:

“Maybe with the paper records and things, but I wish I fought a bit more Khaladov sometimes, that was a poor performance. I didn't think on the go when I was winning the fight. he was exhausted, I should have kept striking with him. So on paper, I'm the greatest, but we all know it's Khaladov.”

The conversation quickly turned to how fighting for the Polish promotion has completely changed De Fries' life, with the champion crediting his current form with creating a better life for him and his family. He also promised to deliver a blockbuster fight against Darko Stosic, the man teased by many to be his next opponent.

“I love KSW. Before I was at KSW, I was depressed, I honestly thought about killing myself a lot. This streak I’ve went on, it's revolutionized my life. It's made my children's lives better. I feel good inside and I do love it. I love Polish fans, I love Poland, you know, and the next time I'll be better you know, me and Darko, we're going to put on a war next time, I'm gonna go crazy. I feel like I have disappointed people."

The UK MMA veteran has been very open and honest about his mental health struggles and when asked if he had a message for those out there who may be struggling De Fries delivered an extremely poignant and heart felt speech.

“For me, it was anxiety that led to depression. It was ruining my life, you know, and I didn't know what anxiety was. I would have killed myself, I hated my life.

“I thought about, every single day, killing myself went through my head. I wasn't happy. I made this doctor's appointment, I saw the doctor, she gave me some medicine and I got some therapy and in three months, I was so lucky mind, in three months I was fixed. Whereas a lot of other people have a much harder time than me.

“I was so fortunate but you just can't give up. I was so lucky that the medicine worked first try. People always ask me ‘Oh Phil, I am struggling with anxiety. I'm struggling with depression.’ And at first, I was saying ‘Go to the doctor, get this medicine. This medicine will fix you.’

“And nobody I have recommended this medicine to, it's helped. I'm incredibly lucky and incredibly fortunate that this medicine worked for me. You just can't give up. I felt worthless sometimes, but now I feel very valued. My girls love me, my wife loves me. I have good friends. I'm a champion here.

“It's horrible, but don't give up.”