The return of Rodtang “Iron Man” Jitmuangnon to ONE Championship will be one of the most anticipated bouts of early 2019.
A few months on from his stunning ONE Super Series debut, the time has come for the two-time Omnoi Stadium Muay Thai World Champion to return to action when he takes on WMC Intercontinental Muay Thai Champion Fahdi “The Gladiator” Khaled from Tunisia.
The pair will battle in a flyweight contest in front of thousands at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines at ONE: HERO’S ASCENT on Friday, 25 January.
"The Iron Man" Rodtang is BACK to steal the show on 25 January!Manila | 25 January | 7:00PM | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/oneascent19
Posted by ONE Championship on Sunday, 6 January 2019
Thailand’s “Iron Man” has taken a three-month break from competition after an electrifying 2018. In total, he had 12 bouts, but none were more important, or arguably more impressive, than his debut in The Home Of Martial Arts.
After taking some time to rest, he is reinvigorated and ready to pick up where he left off at the Mall Of Asia Arena.
“The break was really good for me, my body really needed the rest,” he says.
“Now I’m feeling great, and I am excited to fight again.”
He made his debut with ONE Super Series back in September for ONE: CONQUEST OF HEROES. In a striking clinic that showed off every aspect of the art of eight limbs, Rodtang wowed fans worldwide with his dominant performance, as well as his display of sportsmanship.
With a victory in the world’s largest martial arts organization already under his belt, Rodtang feels he will have an advantage over his opponent – who will make his first promotional appearance – and turn in an even more exhilarating performance.
“Before the first fight I had with ONE I was really nervous. Now that I know more about what it will be like, I’m feeling really confident about this match-up,” he explains.
“This time around I want to make the fight even more exciting, and show the international audience why I got my nickname.”
Friday, 25 January will mark Rodtang’s first trip to Indonesia. Despite the new surroundings, it will be business as usual for the 21-year-old Thai.
“Wherever I compete, it is the same – I need to focus on the fight and focus on doing my very best,” he adds.
His opponent, Khaled, trains out of the Venum Training Camp in Pattaya, Thailand where he hones his skills alongside the likes of fellow ONE stars Alaverdi Ramazanov and Mehdi Zatout.
Khaled is an accomplished Muay Thai stylist who has plenty of experience competing in Thailand on national televised promotions Muay Thai Super Champ and Max Muay Thai, where he has continued to build an impressive professional record that now stands at 33-4.
Khaled brings with him a high-velocity and unorthodox style, but for the time being, at least, Rodtang is focused on exclusively on his own training at Jitmuangnon Gym in Northern Bangkok.
Thanks to his professional slate of 254-41-10, “Iron Man” will enter this match with more than six times the competition experience of his Tunisian foe. However, he is not prepared to let that get to his head.
“I’m training hard and will definitely be fully prepared. Whatever my opponent brings that night, I plan to figure it out in the cage as I go,” he explains.
“My opponent has long limbs and good, hard punches. I will need to be careful.
“Winning and losing is part of sports, but I will do my very best to bring the win home to Thailand.”
If victorious in Manila, Rodtang will most definitely be a step closer to World Title contention.
Winning a ONE Super Series belt would be a crowning achievement for the young Phattalung native who has used his national sport to help alleviate his family’s poverty.
After more than a decade of competitive experience, he is delighted to be on the global stage for martial arts, and excited to try and become a World Champion on the biggest platform of his career.
“I’m really happy competing for ONE Championship. It is my dream to become a champion within the promotion one day,” he adds.