History was made in Bangkok, Thailand, as Srisaket Sor Rungvisai defended his WBC Super Flyweight World Title as a boxing bout headlined a ONE Championship event for the first time.
A sold-out crowd at the Impact Arena also saw more than a dozen other match-ups across mixed martial arts, kickboxing, and Muay Thai rules at ONE: KINGDOM OF HEROES on Saturday, 6 October.
In the evening’s main event, Mexico’s Iran “MagnifiKO” Diaz gave a valiant performance to go the distance with Srisaket, but the Thai hero was clearly the better man across the 12 rounds.
Srisaket showed why he was the favourite heading into the contest, as he stalked Diaz around the ring and connected with hard punches to the head and body.
Though Diaz never had the upper hand for an extended period, he was never out of the contest. The blows he absorbed would have finished many other athletes, but he showed incredible toughness to see the final bell.
When the action ended, both athletes raised their arms in triumph, but there was no mistaking the winner. The judges gave Srisaket the win with scorecards of 119-109, 120-108, and 119-109, and he retained his belt.
The co-main event went the distance, and a new ONE Kickboxing Atomweight World Champion was crowned, as Stamp Fairtex dethroned “Killer Bee” Kai Ting Chuang by unanimous decision.
In the first half of the ONE Super Series bout, the Thai challenger made effective use of powerful knees and kicks to race into an early lead, but the Chinese athlete made a spirited defence of her World Title late on. She used her trademark speed to charge forward and take advantage of her opponent’s fading offence.
However, at the end of five closely-contested rounds, Stamp’s hand was raised as her record improved to 61-15-5, and the home crowd got to cheer another champion from Thailand.
In the main mixed martial arts attraction of the night, Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki only needed 57 seconds to book a shot at the ONE Lightweight World Title.
The Japanese icon put the squeeze on Malaysia’s Ev “E.T.” Ting with an arm-triangle choke, and he went to sleep almost instantly.
Aoki is now set to challenge for the belt he once owned in Japan next March, against the winner of the Eduard Folayang VS Amir Khan match at ONE: CONQUEST OF CHAMPIONS in Manila, Philippines on 23 November.
The Thai fans in the Impact Arena were on their feet during earlier main card action for Nong-O Gaiyanghadao, who displayed a Muay Thai masterclass in his ONE Super Series bantamweight match with Mehdi “Diamond Heart” Zatout.
The legend of the art of eight limbs put on a powerhouse performance – stepping up a gear after a competitive first round to drop his French opponent with a right elbow in the second stanza.
From there, the Thai was utterly dominant, and cruised to a unanimous decision victory after another round and a half of one-way traffic.
Dutch kickboxing legend Andy “Souwer Power” Souwer made his ONE Super Series debut in a lightweight kickboxing contest against Anthony “The Assassin” Njokuani, who scored an upset by split decision.
The Nigerian matched the two-time K-1 World Max Champion for much of the bout, using evasive movement to stop Souwer from landing effectively, and picking his shots carefully to edge the contest in the judges’ eyes.
In the opening contest of the main card, surging bantamweight contender Leandro “Brodinho” Issa saw an end to his winning streak as Muin “Tajik” Gafurov turned out his lights with an overhand right.
In his return to ONE after two years away, the Combat Sambo World Champion from Tajikistan shook off the submission attempts from his Brazilian opponent before hitting the one-punch knockout blow after just 2:24 in the first round of this catch weight contest.
Alaverdi Ramazanov authored arguably the biggest upset so far in ONE Super Series, as he edged hometown hero Petchmorrakot Wor. Sangprapai in their bantamweight Muay Thai clash to close the prelims.
The Russian was aggressive and active in his promotional debut, shrugging off the damage caused by his opponent’s elbows to earn all three judges’ favour against the two-division Lumpinee Stadium and WMC World Champion.
The last man to defeat new ONE Strawweight World Champion, Hayato Suzuki, did no harm to his chances of securing a rematch for the belt by taking out Robin “The Illongo” Catalan.
The Japanese grappler was relentless in his pursuit of the finish, as he hunted for takedowns and dominant positions. In the second round, he locked in a rear-naked choke, and though the Filipino defended well, he was forced to tap with 3:42 on the clock.
A thrilling ONE Super Series flyweight kickboxing bout went back-and-forth for three rounds before Muay Thai legend Singtongnoi Por Telakun emerged with a unanimous decision.
The Thai hero had to withstand a relentless attack from Japan’s Masahide “Crazy Rabbit” Kudo, but his kicks and counter strikes were enough to give him the victory, which was his second in the organization.
Thai superstar Rika “Tiny Doll” Ishige returned to the win column in her first bout in six months, and brought the night’s second passionate response from the Thai fans.
The Tiger Muay Thai representative weathered an early storm from Myanmar’s Bozhena Antoniyar, took the contest to the ground, and fired away with punches and elbows from her opponent’s back. The stoppage came at 2:48 of round one.
The Bangkok crowd was on its feet for the first ONE Super Series Muay Thai bout of the night, as Thailand’s Petchdam Kaiyanghadao hit his second consecutive highlight-reel knockout.
Kenny Tse was out on his feet when he absorbed the left roundhouse kick at 1:26 of the first round, making the follow-up knee and elbow academic.
Fu Chang Xin got his second ONE win with a rear-naked choke of Rin Saroth at the 3:04 mark of the second round.
After a striking battle in the first five minutes, the Chinese bantamweight took the bout to the mat and forced his Cambodian opponent to tap within an instant of locking up the submission.
In the first bout of the evening, Filipino Kyokushin karate champion Ramon Gonzales made short work of Indonesia’s Dodi Mardian.
The mixed martial arts flyweight bout ended with another rear-naked choke at 3:33 of round one.