Reece “Lightning” McLaren has confirmed his shot at the ONE Flyweight World Championship.
The Filipino-Australian produced a picture-perfect submission to halt the charge of Malaysian hero Gianni Subba in the main event of ONE: VISIONS OF VICTORY in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on Friday, 9 March.
The bout started out as most expected, with slick striker Subba looking to establish his superiority on the feet, and expert grappler McLaren seeking to assert his authority on the mat. Both men had their successes in the opening round, with the Australian finishing the frame the stronger of the two.
McLaren, an XFC and Eternal MMA Champion, showed his fun-loving character in the second round after a Subba spinning wheel kick missed, as he took an exaggerated look up at the rafters to see where the Bali MMA-trained contender’s kick ended up. Subba would play along, leading to an entertaining moment between the two.
Despite McLaren’s laid-back, relaxed style, Subba remained focused, and started to land clean with slick counters. He forced “Lightning” backwards with multi-punch combinations.
However, just when it looked like Subba was getting comfortable in the stand-up, McLaren pounced with a spectacular demonstration of his grappling skills, as he finished the contest in a matter of seconds.
With Subba looking to land another salvo of strikes, McLaren instantly changed levels and drove into a powerful takedown. He forced the Malaysian’s back onto the canvas, and landed perfectly in an arm-triangle choke. The Aussie put on the squeeze, and got the tap to secure a highlight-reel submission finish.
McLaren becomes the first man to finish Subba in competition. He elevates his record to 11-5, and perfectly positions himself for a shot at the flyweight world championship sometime later this year.
The only question is who will be face next? Will it be ONE Flyweight World Champion Adriano “Mikinho” Moraes, or ONE Interim Flyweight World Champion Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio?
Whoever it is, expect more fireworks inside the ONE cage as Australia’s exciting flyweight star looks to add a ONE World Championship to his ever-growing resume.