ONE Championship: Fernandes fends of Nguyen
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ONE Championship (ONE) held a historic evening in Bangkok as the capacity crowd at the Impact Arena witnessed an amazing display of heart-pounding martial arts action. ONE: IRON WILL sent shockwaves of excitement throughout the state-of-the-art stadium as the card featured a series of compelling bouts, punctuated by an unforgettable championship clash.
In a gruelling five-round title tiff, reigning ONE Bantamweight World Champion Bibiano “The Flash” Fernandes of Brazil turned in a gutsy performance, overcoming a spirited effort from ONE Featherweight & Lightweight World Champion Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen of Sydney, Australia to win via razor-thin split decision.
The action was electric all throughout the bout, with both men having their moments. Although Nguyen landed the harder, more telling blows, Fernandes was the busier ma and performed slightly better overall with his takedowns and accurate combinations. In the final frame, Fernandes pulled away just slightly, outworking Nguyen over the last five minutes of the contest. In the end, the Brazilian did just enough to retain his title in front of a packed Impact Arena crowd.
“I said I would win, and I did. I really live for these challenges. I’m the champion, and I’m here to stay. I’m the best bantamweight in the world. I’ve proven it many times. Bangkok, Thailand — thank you for having me,” said Fernandes, ONE Bantamweight World Champion.
In the co-main event of the evening, Jeremy “The Jaguar” Miado of the Philippines overcame insurmountable odds, knocking out former world champion Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke in the first round. In a wild exchange of punches, Miado clipped Amnuaysirichoke with a thunderous right cross, sending the Thai hometown hero crashing to the canvas as the referee waved off the contest.
Shannon “OneShin” Wiratchai of Thailand authored one of the most dominant performances of the night, reinserting his name into the winner’s column with a quick knockout victory over Singapore-based Indian martial artist Rahul Raju. With his impressive conquest of Raju, Wiratchai earned the GoDaddy Knockout of the Night.
In a clash of talented female atomweights, Angelie Sabanal of the Philippines captured a hard-earned victory, routing Thai rising star Rika Ishige via unanimous decision in her ONE Championship debut. Sabanal and Ishige kept the action focused primarily at the center of the ONE Championship cage for the majority of the bout.
The Filipina newcomer showcased her pinpoint accurate striking early on, peppering Ishige with stinging kicks and stiff punches. Although Ishige boldly traded strikes with the Filipina kickboxer from bell to bell, the latter pulled away in the final round, landing the more telling blows. In the end, Sabanal earned the undivided nod from the three judges at cageside.
23-year-old Saygid Guseyn Arslanaliev reignited his meteoric rise through the ranks, defeating seasoned Japanese veteran Tetsuya Yamada by submission. Driven to score a finish, Arslanaliev was able to get the submission in the third round, making Yamada tap from a wrenching belly-down armbar.
Pakistani martial artist Waqar Umar made an astounding statement in his return to the ONE Championship cage after nearly two years of absence, submitting Chinese prospect Zhao Zhi Kang in the first round of their featherweight clash.
American submission wizard Garry “The Lion Killer” Tonon impressed in his highly-anticipated ONE Championship debut, toppling Filipino lightweight Richard Corminal in his maiden assignment wearing four-ounce gloves on the premier martial arts stage. In the second round, Tonon took matters to the ground and quickly got mount, finishing Corminal with a pair of elbows.
Kritsada “Dream Man” Kongsrichai made quick work of the Philippines’ Robin Catalan to continue his winning ways inside the ONE Championship cage. Catalan was deemed unable to continue when he landed on the mat, forcing the referee to wave it off and declare Kongsrichai as the victor by way of stoppage.
Multiple-time kickboxing world champion Alain “The Panther” Ngalani placed himself back on the winning track by edging out promotional newcomer Ariunbold Tur-Ochir of Mongolia via split decision. After a gruelling contest, it was Ngalani who walked out with his hand raised in triumph.
Gilberto Galvao of Brazil spoiled the much-awaited return of Jake Butler to competition, defeating the decorated American wrestler by technical knockout in the second round. As Butler dropped to the canvas, he held onto his leg and hit the ground writhing in pain, the referee stepped in and called a halt to the bout, awarding the victory to Galvao.
A three-round bantamweight encounter served as the curtain-raiser for ONE: IRON WILL as “The Terminator” Sunoto battled it out with Malaysian standout Hisyam Samsudin. With a dominant top game, Sunoto notched his second consecutive victory in 2018, defeating Samsudin as all three judges saw the bout in favor of the Indonesian to win by unanimous decision.
Official results for ONE: IRON WILL
- ONE Bantamweight World Championship bout: Bibiano Fernandes defeats Martin Nguyen by Split Decision (SD) after 3 rounds
- Strawweight bout: Jeremy Miado defeats Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke by Knockout (KO) at 1:29 minutes of round 1
- Lightweight bout: Shannon Wiratchai defeats Rahul Raju by Knockout (KO) at 0:21 minutes of round 1
- Women’s atomweight bout: Angelie Sabanal defeats Rika Ishige by Unanimous Decision (UD)
- Lightweight bout: Saygid Guseyn Arslanaliev defeats Tetsuya Yamada by Submission (Armbar) at 2:51 minutes of round 3
- Featherweight bout: Waqar Umar defeats Zhao Zhi Kang by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 4:21 minutes of round 1
- Lightweight bout: Garry Tonon defeats Richard Corminal by TKO (Strikes) at 3:40 minutes of round 2
- Strawweight bout: Kritsada Kongsrichai defeats Robin Catalan by TKO (Slam) at 1:40 minutes of round 1
- Light Heavyweight bout: Alain Ngalani defeats Ariunbold Tur-Ochir by Split Decision (SD) after 3 rounds
- Middleweight bout: Gilberto Galvao defeats Jake Butler by TKO (Strikes) at 0:07 minutes of round 2
- Bantamweight bout: Sunoto defeats Hisyam Samsudin by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds