ONE Championship held three live shows in May 2019, with two of three World Titles changing hands in a pair of main events.
The only successful World Title defense came at ONE: Warriors Of Light, as Singapore-based Thai sensation Nong-O Gaiyanghadao defeated Japan’s Hiroaki Suzuki in Bangkok to retain his ONE Bantamweight Muay Thai World Championship.
Nong-O, who trains out of Evolve MMA, utilized his right roundhouse kick throughout the five-round affair, which the Japanese challenger had no answer for.
However, despite being outclassed in their match-up, Suzuki showed tremendous heart and continued to go toe-to-toe against the Muay Thai legend.
While the packed crowd cheered for their native son, Nong-O did not let the emotions of competing in his hometown get the best of him.
“I followed the plan to the end. In all of my career, I have never underestimated my opponents,” the 32-year-old explains.
“I am always careful when I fight and don’t get too emotional. I make sure to stay in control.
“If there is an opportunity for a knockout, I will take it. If an opportunity doesn’t come up, I just focus on my style of being strong and picking my shots.”
Ultimately, it was a display of dominance, and Nong-O proved even further that he is truly the man to beat in the bantamweight division.
With his first successful World Title defense under his belt, he is looking to make a quick return to the ring to defend his crown.
“My plan was to let my body rest for one week. I went home to be with my wife and kids, and went to the temple to make merit with them. After that, it is back to work and training,” he says.
“I’d like to compete again around August. It is the perfect amount of time for me — not too long, but not too soon either. I feel it would be optimal for my body, as I don’t want to rest for too long.
“Whenever ONE Championship sets a date, I’ll be ready to fight anyone they put in front of me.”