Features

3 Bouts That Could Steal The Show At ONE: ROOTS OF HONOR

April 10, 2019

High-stakes action and excitement are guaranteed from the top to the bottom of the bill when ONE Championship returns to Manila, Philippines this Friday, 12 April for ONE: ROOTS OF HONOR.

Pulses are certain to race when four of the very best mixed martial artists in the world compete in two World Title bouts in the main and co-main events, but there are plenty of other contests that are likely to thrill – even without gold on the line.

Ahead of what is sure to be a great night at the Mall Of Asia Arena, the onefc.com editorial team has taken a deep dive into the event to select three more match-ups that should have martial arts fans on the edge of their seats.

Tatsumitsu Wada VS Gustavo Balart

One burning question will be answered about one of mixed martial arts’ biggest stars this Friday – who is next for Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson in the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix?

It will be either Gustavo “El Gladiador” Balart or Tatsumitsu “The Sweeper” Wada, and these men are likely to entertain us when they face each other to find the answer.

Balart – who took this bout on just a few weeks’ notice – may be small, but any opponent would be a fool to underestimate him. His stocky frame is strong and muscular, which is perfect for his powerhouse wrestling offense. He also packs one heck of a punch that is capable of scoring a knockout blow.

The Cuban also always comes forward, so Wada will have to keep active at all times to fend him off and get the upper hand.

Fortunately, the DEEP Flyweight World Champion has a ton of tools in his arsenal to do that. He is as capable of tying rivals in knots as he is unleashing powerful ground and pound on the mat, and on the feet, he is a tricky, unorthodox striker with a strong clinch.

Aggression is also Wada’s watchword, so expect these two men to meet in the middle and put on a show.

Edward Kelly VS Sung Jong Lee

Are we going to see another Knockout of the Year contender from Edward Kelly this Friday?

Are we going to see another Knockout of the Year contender from Edward "The Ferocious" Kelly this Friday?Manila | 12 April | 6:00PM | Watch on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onehonor19

Posted by ONE Championship on Monday, April 8, 2019

The closest thing ONE: ROOTS OF HONOR has to a pure striker versus grappler match-up is this showdown between Edward “The Ferocious” Kelly and Sung Jong Lee.

Of course, Kelly can be dangerous on the mat, and Lee can hold his own on the feet, but each man’s clearest route to a finish is with their specialist skills.

Lee is a NAGA No-Gi Grappling Champion representing 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu Korea, which means he has all manner of ways to tie his rivals in knots to force a tap with a choke or lock. In particular, watch out for his dangerous heel hooks.

“The Ferocious” is like all of his Team Lakay training partners – he has the varied arsenal and raw power to finish an opponent with a single blow or put them away with a fast and forceful combination.

Between them, they have only won one bout by decision, suggesting a finish is almost certain when they go to battle in Manila.

Lerdsila Phuket Top Team VS Kohei “Momotaro” Kodera

What innovative strikes will we see from Muay Thai technician Lerdsila this Friday?

What innovative strikes will we see from Muay Thai technician Lerdsila this Friday? Manila | 12 April | 6:00PM | Watch on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onehonor19

Posted by ONE Championship on Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Lerdsila Phuket Top Team and Kohei “Momotaro” Kodera are both fascinating strikers with unique, skillful styles that combine fluid movement and sharp strikes that will please the stand-up purists in their ONE Super Series flyweight Muay Thai clash.

Lerdsila is known for his evasion, counter-striking, and almost-unmatched creativity, and the legend of “the art of eight limbs” has put all that to good use in his two ONE Super Series performances to date – a pair of decision wins over Cambodia’s Sok Thy.

However, the intriguing thing about his battle with “Momotaro” is that the Japanese athlete could not be more different to Sok Thy, stylistically.

He balances his come-forward aggression by cutting angles and unleashing a more diverse array of strikes, and Lerdsila will have to pull out of all the tools in his defensive repertoire to stay safe.

Kodera will have to find a way to land some leather on the elusive Thai by moving through accurate push kicks and round kicks. Lerdsila will have to acclimatize to an opponent who will not walk him down in a straight line, but will attack from angles and with punches, knees, shins, and even heels.

Don’t expect “stand and bang,” but do anticipate an elegant display of stand-up combat.

Manila | 12 April | 7:00PM | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Ticketshttp://bit.ly/onehonor19