LAST_UPDATEThu, 24 May 2018 8am

Meet Peter Davis – The Model, Actor and Rising Malaysian MMA Star

peter_davis_onefcLife is good for Peter Davis. Not only does the ripped 31-year-old have colorful careers as a model and an actor, his pursuit to be among the best mixed martial artists (MMA) has also taken off to a flying start.

With such diverse background, many were cynical to whether his skills in an obscure form of Chinese Kung Fu called Wuji Chuan would transfer to MMA. But Davis put everyone in check brutally annihilating Singaporean Kim Hock in ONE FC: Destiny of Warriors last year, stopping him within the first few seconds of the opening round with a stunning reverse hook kick.

With two ONE FC wins under his belt, the Cage Fighting Championship (CFC) champ has proven that he is much more than a pretty face and he’s about to once again show MMA fans what time it is in his biggest test yet when he faces one of the most exciting Indonesian cage-fighting talents – the undefeated Leo Krishna – on Feb 2 in Stadium Putra, Bukit Jalil.

peter_davis_onefc3Malaysian Digest: You have an interesting background being a model, actor as well as an MMA fighter. What movies have you’ve been in?

Peter Davis: I did a movie in 2008 called ‘Sell Out’ and that was an international success in film festivals. I went to Venice film festival for that and had a great time there. As far as Asia goes I went to Golden Horses (film festival) in Taiwan and that was a great experience meeting other actors there. I’ve done some other movies, TV dramas and ‘Hot Guys Who Cook’ for a Singapore TV channel. So I’m cooking nowadays as well…

MD: You mean you can cook too?

PD: Yeah, I can cook. I love eating so you gotta cook at some point, right?

But you’re relatively unknown in the local film industry.

I’m known as more of an model but quite known as an actor but I don’t get to do that many Malay films because my Bahasa sucks basically. I can speak a bit. But I did a Malay film called ‘Apa Dosa Ku?’ which is a TV drama with Elaine Daily about the Japanese invasion back in the 40s. It won some awards actually, well, Elaine won awards for that. I spoke 60 percent in Bahasa for that movie.

peter_davis11Can you speak Cantonese?

I can speak Cantonese a little bit, enough to get by if I was starving in Hong Kong. I also did a movie called ‘Apokalips X’ by Mamat Khalid which is 100% in Bahasa and that should be out hopefully end of this year.

Are there any fighting scenes in these movies?

Yeah, ‘Apokalips X’ is a big one for fighting. Actually I’m also doing a food show called ‘I Eat KL’ which will be coming out end of this month. There’s one more big one which is coming soon which is an international movie – a UK production by a French director shot in Hong Kong – but we need a bit more financing. We’re looking for US$800,000, so if you know anyone who has that much to put in a movie…

peter_davis_onefc2Yeah, I’ll check with my contacts… So, in modeling, what ads have you done so far?

I did one for Toyota Prius in Thailand, Baskin Robbins, Sparkmanshop and Puma, I’m sponsored by Puma.

Okay, let’s get to fighting. That was an impressive performance in ONE FC: Destiny of Warriors last year. You pulled off a really impressive reverse hook which hit right on the spot…

Yeah, that set me up to finish the fight. From there I bounced off him. I have enough experience to know that when someone is rocked you have to go in and do the best you can to finish him off. Otherwise the fight’s gonna go on for the whole night and you don’t want that…

peter_davis1Did you see that fight the way it worked out? Were you surprised at how you did, especially landing that reverse hook?

I was planning to finish the fight in the first round and I was hoping for a knockout. So I started trying stuff and get him to open up. He tried to hit me a few times and I moved back and he got a bit puzzled on how to move in so I had to be the aggressor. So I was trying to pull him this way and I opened him up for that left kick and just landed that. Some people say that I was lucky. Yeah, it was lucky that it did hit but it’s not like I didn’t train that kick 1,000 times or more like 10,000 times.

But not everyone can pull off that kick like that in an MMA fight.

Yeah, it’s a little flashy but to me it’s like a normal kick. Like picking up a cup of tea to drink, it’s like a normal kick to me because I train a lot. It’s just one of my moves.

peter_davis_onefc5After that, your knee shots to his face were devastating…

Yeah, but it was my fist that broke his jaw.

Yeah. I only heard about that yesterday.

He must have felt something but he didn’t know what it was. I hit him with an uppercut which raised his head and that did the other side of his jaw and blood started to come out and the referee stopped the fight.

Well, the crowd loved it.

Yeah, I felt that and I really appreciate it.

Your background is in some obscure form of Kung Fu called Wuji Chuan. Who did you train under in this discipline?

It’s from my original sifu who is essentially still my sifu. He’s now in the UK but he’s back in Malaysia doing seminars for this January and February. So if you want to catch my original sifu on tour in Malaysia feel free to get in touch with me.

peter_davis_onefc6He must be proud of you.

Uh, well… he still tells me: ‘You’re sh*t... Your ground work is sh*t... Your standing not so good…’

Tell us a bit about Wuji Chuan.

Basically, my sifu has done is the whole mixed martial arts thing before MMA became popular. So he trained in Samba wrestling with the Russian army and other bits with the Malaysian army as well as Wing Chun. He was sick when he was a kid and a chi master helped him out by getting him to learn Kung Fu to build his strength. He’s been learning Kung Fu since he was three or five years old.

So he’s been learning a lot of stuff including streetfighting. He implements all the pragmatic streetfighting styles and made it his style. In streetfighting, basically you don’t hang around. You just wanna go ‘bam’ and finish somebody with one punch and move on to the next person. That’s kind of the philosophy. It’s also about the circular movements of your shoulders and keeping the fundamentals of this style and developing it into your own style. I’ve taken this principle to heart and have developed my own style of fighting. All I’ve done is add American wrestling and jiu jitsu and this is what makes me a better martial artist.

peter_davis_onefc8As a model and actor you have to maintain your looks. Does this have a psychological effect on you when you’re fighting?

When I’m fighting I have to turn down modeling jobs because I have to focus on just fighting otherwise I’m gonna get messed up. I only have one thing on my mind when I’m fighting – the other person standing in front of me and what I’m going to do to them… and what he’s going to do and how I’m going to react to it. This is all I think about. I don’t care about anything else. You can’t. If you do you’re going to get distracted and you’re going to lose. It only takes a split second to get messed up…

peter_davis_onefc7How do you see your fight against Leo Krishna? Are you expecting more grappling or striking in this one?

He’s predominantly a grappler. He’s leading the way for Indonesian MMA right now and I’m going to quash that in the first round with my fists. Not to sound cocky, but I believe that’s my duty and with my experience over his experience and my last performance, I should have the edge. He’s a good jiu jitsu practitioner and his striking is good but I think my skills are better, especially in striking.

So, in a street fight, let’s say some guy picks on you in bar, how would you advise a normal guy to handle the situation?

Peter Davis (R) poses with Eric Kelly (L)Peter Davis (R) poses with Eric Kelly (L)You’d want to finish any street fight quick. If there are more than one assailants, you have to go for the big guy first and **** him up then move on to the smaller guy. That’s just the way it is.

You also look out for anything you can use as a weapon [picks up a steak knife and holds it with the tip backward] but you have to look at how serious the situation is. If it’s not serious I’m not going to pick up the knife. If it’s life-threatening then pick up the knife and fend them back. But if you pick up the knife be warned that they’re going to pick up a knives. Chairs are also good items for defense as they’ll give you good distance and range (from your attackers). You have to think quick man.

But the right thing to do is to talk it out first. If it’s possible, diffuse the situation. Don’t get into a bad situation.

Tell us about some of the ‘bad situations’ you’ve been in.

I’ve been in street fights with big guys but I managed to get out of those using my bodyweight and movements and knocked them over with front kicks. I’ve also knocked somebody out (in a street fight). Real fights do happen…

Enter Malaysian Digest ONE FC: Return of Warriors Contest to win tickets to see Peter Davis vs Leo Krishna and 18 other fighters in action on Feb 2.

- mD