One Championship Press Release – Full Card Below
26-year-old Ev “E.T.” Ting is one of Malaysia’s most promising young talents. His exceptional 10-3 record has come against solid opposition. Fresh off a Guillotine Choke submission victory in his last bout, Ting is known to be a ferocious striker with a well-rounded ground game making him a complete fighter. Ting will look to play off the energy of his hometown crowd when he takes on the Philippines’ Eric Kelly.
Eric “The Natural” Kelly of Baguio City, Philippines is undoubtedly one of the most talented fighters to come out of the country. With just one defeat on his professional record, Kelly has decimated opponents inside the cage with his ability to secure fight-ending finishes. Of his twelve victories, nine have come by submission. Kelly has long been due for a title shot but will have to get past Malaysia’s Ev Ting first to continue in his quest for ONE Championship gold.
Team Lakay veteran lightweight standout Eduard “Landslide” Folayang has long been among the elite mixed martial artists in the Philippines. Folayang continues his stellar career with wins over some of the most highly-regarded opponents. Since his previous fight, the 32-year old has added an improved grappling game to go with his great Wushu base. Folayang will now pit his skills against Japan’s Tetsuya Yamada next.
Tetsuya Yamada of Kanigawa, Japan is a promising young lightweight with a penchant for spectacular finishes. The 25-year-old has finished 12 of his 15 wins either by submission or by highlight reel knockout and will look to replicate his success when he makes his debut inside the ONE Cage against the Philippines’ Eduard Folayang.
Jake Butler has firmly established himself as one of the top light heavyweights in the division. He has a highlight reel of victories by exciting finishes, and possesses some of the best wrestling in the sport having honed his skills as captain of the Princeton wrestling team. Butler is unstoppable when he utilizes his signature wrestling techniques, but he has also improved his striking skills by training with Muay Thai world champions in Asia. Butler’s next challenge will be against Japan’s Tatsuya Mizuno.
Tatsuya Mizuno is a mixed martial arts veteran from Tokyo, Japan. Mizuno’s good mix of stoppage and submission wins lends to the fact that both his striking and his grappling skills are well-rounded and highly effective. He’s never in a boring fight and always competes with decisive victory in mind. At 34-years of age, Mizuno looks to continue his career against the fast-rising Jake Butler.
Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio of the famed Team Lakay of Baguio City, Philippines is a highly-skilled Wushu practitioner. He breaks down opponents with well-placed combinations and impeccable timing. Eustaquio’s lightning quick strikes have seen him successful against high-level opponents despite two recent setbacks. Eustaquio now looks to get back on track as he takes on Saiful Merican.
Saiful “The Vampire” Merican of Malaysia is happy to compete in front of his hometown crowd in Kuala Lumpur. The 27-year old flyweight is an explosive striker who starts out fast, looking to end fights early. He’s had success inside the ONE Cage and will now look to continue his winning ways against the Philippines’ Geje Eustaquio.
Hard-hitting Sami Amin of Cairo, Egypt is a bantamweight contender with a solid professional mixed martial arts record of five wins, two losses and one draw . He’s fought once inside the ONE Cage, against Fransino Tirta in 2014 but came up short. He now looks for redemption as he returns to ONE Championship to face Samir Mrabet.
Samir Mrabet of Brussels, Belgium is undefeated as a mixed martial artist at three wins with no losses. Mrabet owns a knockout and a submission win to his credit, including a victory in his ONE Championship debut last 2013. Mrabet now returns to the ONE Cage after over two years away from professional competition to take on Sami Amin.
At just 21-years of age, Keanu Subba is a former amateur MMA champion and is one of the most promising young talents on ONE Championship’s roster. Victorious in his debut for the promotion, Subba brought the crowd to the edge of their seats with a first round stoppage of Florian Garel. Subba will look to replicate the victory by taking on Rayner Kinsiong next.
Rayner Kinsiong of Sabah, Malaysia is known for his tenacity and grit inside the cage. Never one to back down from a good scrap, Kinsiong has poured his heart and soul into martial arts and it’s evident in the way he goes out and tries to put on a show for the crowd. Kinsiong will face the toughest test in his career when he takes on Keanu Subba.
Christian Lee, younger brother of Singapore’s MMA darling Angela “Unstoppable” Lee, made a successful debut inside the ONE Cage last December with a first round TKO of Cambodia’s David Meak. Lee impressed with his relentless offense, leading to the stoppage of Meak just under a minute into the matchup. Lee now looks for the same success when he returns to the cage against Mahmoud Mohamed.
Mahmoud Mohamed of Cairo, Egypt is a mixed martial artist with a 3-2-1 professional MMA record. The Egyptian has competed solely in his home country but will be making his way overseas for this first time now in his ONE Championship debut. He’ll take on one of the promotion’s fastest rising stars in young Christian Lee.
20-year old middleweight prospect Agilan “Alligator” Thani of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia is unbeaten as a professional mixed martial artist, with two wins inside the ONE Cage. All three of the wins on his record have come either by knockout or by submission as the young star is making his presence felt the welterweight division. Thani will face the returning James Kouame next.
James Kouame of Ontario, Canada last competed for ONE Championship back in 2013, when he was finished by highly-regarded Jake Butler via submission. Kouame seeks redemption inside the ONE Cage now more than two years later, this time against Agilan Thani.
As part of the Facebook Livestream of preliminary bouts, Saygid Guseyn Arslanaliev and opponent yet to be confirmed will do battle while female MMA athletes, Jenny Huang and Amira Badr will lock horns inside the ONE Cage.
Ev Ting(10-3) vs Eric Kelly (12-1)
Tetsuya Yamada(15-3) vs Eduard Folayang (14-5)
Tatsuya Mizuno(14-10-1) vs Jake Butler (6-1)
Saiful Merican(4-2) vs Geje Eustaquio (6-4)
Sami Amin(5-2-1) vs Samir Mrabet (3-0)
Keanu Subba (2-1) vs Rayner Kinsiong (2-1)
Mahmoud Mohamed (3-2) vs Christian Lee (1-0)
Agilan Thani (3-0) vs James Kouame (3-6)
TBA (1-1) vs Saygid Guseyn Arslanaliev (0-0)
Amira Badr (0-0) vs Jenny Huang (2-0)
Highest Ranked Strawweight Outside of the UFC challenged Angela Lee to a title fight in One Championship
28 Years Old, Zhang Weili(16-1) from China has challenged Strawweight champion Angela Lee for her strap in One Championship according to a source close to the Chinese fighter. Zhang who is the champion and fighting for Chinese based promotion Kunlun FC is currently negotiating on a one fight deal to face Angela. According to the source, they would like to determine who is the best women fighter in Asia in a one-off match and would have no problems to fight under the One Championship banner.
Since her pro debut loss in 2013, Zhang has racked up 16 wins in 3 years with a total of 15 finishes. She is the number #6 ranked women strawweight in the World according to Fightmatrix.com, just behind Rose Namajunas who will be facing UFC champion and number #1 ranked strawweight Joanna Jedrzejczyk for the title next month. Angela, on the other hand, is 9 rungs below Zhang at number 15.
While ONE was very eager to have a cross-promotion fight between Angela Lee and Joanna Jedrzejczyk to determine who has the better strawweight, they seem less eager to have a Kunlun FC champion on board for a one fight deal. The source states that ONE would need for Zhang to sign a 2-year exclusive contract first before discussing further for a fight with Angela.
If the source is accurate, ONE seems to be covering their bases this time and would not like for their champion to lose the belt to another promotion without securing Zhang on an exclusive contract. Kunlun, on the other hand, would also not want to lose their best fighter to another Asian promotion. Zhang would be a huge asset to ONE for their expansion in China but it would be tough for them to pry off the Chinese fighter as the source states that Zhang is being paid handsomely on Kunlun FC.
While things are looking bleak for a match between Angela Lee and Zhang Weili to happen in the ONE Championship cage, the fans will be keeping their fingers crossed and hope that they could witness a fight between two of the best women Strawweights in Asia.
Martin Nguyen to challenge Eduard Folayang’s title in Manila for the first champion vs champion fight in ONE Championship
After speculations on who Martin Nguyen’s next opponent when he signed a fight contract, ONE Championship have confirmed that Martin Nguyen is set to challenge Eduard Folayang’s lightweight title in Manila on ONE: LEGENDS OF THE WORLD on 10 November.
The fight is the latest in a series of cross-division fights announced after Shinya Aoki vs Ben Askren and Aung La NSang vs Alain Ngalani, but this will be the first time the reigning ONE Championship titleholders from two weight divisions will clash.
Nguyen’s coach, Fari Salievski, did tease on the idea of Nguyen fighting for the title in different weight divisions , but he teased on a bantamweight division since Martin was underweight for his featherweight title fight against Marat Gafurov.
Despite being on the lighter side of a featherweight division, the new champion decided to challenge the title against a fighter a weight class above him, and opens the possibility of the first fighter in ONE Championship to challenge the title in 3 weight divisions.
“I’m not out only to make a statement, but to go down in history as the best to ever compete under the ONE Championship banner” – Martin Nguyen
ONE: LEGENDS OF THE WORLD will be held in Malls of Asia Arena in Manila on 10 November 2017
Bashir Ahmad embraces new role in ONE Championship
Bashir Ahmad is appointed as the Senior Manager of Industry Partnerships, the role made to develop and strengthen the relationships between ONE Championship and various MMA gyms and promotions.
“Essentially, I see myself doing what I did in Pakistan and working to accelerate the growth of MMA in Asia with other players in the MMA scene,” Ahmad explained.
As the pioneer of Pakistani MMA, Bashir Ahmad has worked to promote MMA in Pakistan, most notably the Shaheen Gym project, a non-profit gym which serves to take at-risk youth off the street with the appeal and focus of MMA. With his new position in ONE, Ahmad believes he will be better positioned to develop MMA in Asia, particularly in his hometown Pakistan.
“I think it’s a win-win. I’ve learned about developing MMA in a really difficult market – Pakistan, and I bring that experience with me.”
“On the flip side, I get work with one of the world’s most professional martial arts brands and bring those lessons to my mission in Pakistan.”
4-3 on his professional MMA career, Ahmad has been fighting for ONE Championship since April 2013 and became the first ONE Championship athlete to make the transition from into the management role in the promotion. Despite this additional role, Ahmad is adamant that his new role in ONE Championship does not take him away from active competition.
“100% not retired. I can certainly train. If Martin can beat Gafurov while being a full-time mechanic, I can certainly train when I work in the MMA industry for a living. It’s about time management and training smart.”
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