Nieky “The Natural” Holzken and Regian “The Immortal” Eersel have looked unstoppable in ONE Super Series so far, but only one man will leave the Singapore Indoor Stadium with the inaugural ONE Lightweight Kickboxing World Championship.
The powerful strikers will collide in an all-Dutch battle for the gold at ONE: ENTER THE DRAGON on Friday, 17 May, and their shared predilection for forward pressure and aggression should make for a spectacular contest.
Though they both hail from the same kickboxing-crazed nation, these two athletes will bring different – albeit equally as dangerous – styles to “The Lion City.”
Here are the keys to victory for each man in their historic World Title encounter.
#1 Holzken – Educated Hands
Nieky Holzken gives us a sneak peek at what he's been working on for his ONE Lightweight Kickboxing World Title showdown!Singapore | 17 May | 7:00PM | Watch on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onedragon19
Posted by ONE Championship on Tuesday, April 23, 2019
“The Natural” is best known as a seven-time World Champion in kickboxing, but he has also trained extensively as a pure boxer, and he holds a 14-1 professional record in the sweet science, with 11 knockout wins.
That experience has been a huge benefit for his kickboxing career, and there are not many in the sport who can match him punch-for-punch.
Holzken can overwhelm and chase his opponents down with flurries of strikes, and when he has backed them up against the ropes, he probes until he sees an opening, and then lets rip with his most powerful punches.
If his adversary raises their guard to block concussive blows to the head, he has a penchant for landing a crushing left hook to the liver, and if a small gap opens in their defenses for a moment, he has a devastating arsenal of weapons to pierce their guard – like the uppercut he used to knock out Cosmo Alexandre in his ONE debut.
#2 Eersel – Knockout Knees
Ridiculous knees from Regian Eersel!Download the ONE Super App now ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp
Posted by ONE Championship on Monday, August 20, 2018
“The Immortal” is a tall, rangy athlete for his weight class, and will bring a slight height advantage into this contest. That should make it easier for him to land his knees to the body.
Eersel has made this his trademark. He sent Brad “Quake” Riddell to the canvas with a knee to the body in the first ever ONE Super Series contest, and the same sort of strike contributed to his knockout of Anthony “The Assassin” Njokuani in his last bout.
Holzken will not just need to be wary of knees to the midsection, however. The Sityodtong Amsterdam representative is not afraid to go aerial and unleash his jumping knees to the head. If one of those connects, the match-up could come to a premature conclusion in an instant.
#3 Holzken – Thinking Outside The Box
Will Nieky Holzken's precision and power lead to another show-stopping KO against striking supernova Mustapha Haida on Friday?Singapore | 22 February | 6:30PM | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Facebook: Prelims LIVE | Twitter: Prelims + 2 Main-Card bouts LIVE | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onegreatness19
Posted by ONE Championship on Wednesday, February 20, 2019
Holzken’s bread-and-butter kickboxing techniques are technically proficient. He does all the basics almost perfectly — as you would expect from one of the world’s elite kickboxers.
However, “The Natural” also has a diverse bag of tricks that can surprise his opponents. He uses spinning back kicks and hook kicks infrequently enough that they are hard to anticipate, but they are never more than a split second away from making an impact.
If they land, they cause damage in a big way, but even if they do not, there is every chance he will have opened up an opportunity to hit his target with one of his orthodox power strikes.
#4 Eersel – Aim High
Regian "The Immortal" Eersel looks to make history and become the first ONE Lightweight Kickboxing World Champion on 17 May!Singapore | 17 May | 7:00PM | Watch on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onedragon19
Posted by ONE Championship on Sunday, April 28, 2019
Eersel has done his most decisive damage in ONE Super Series with his punches and knees, but it would be a big mistake to overlook his kicking capability.
“The Immortal” has scored KO victories with high kicks over elite-level opposition in the past, including ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix participant, “Smokin” Jo Nattawut.
The Lion Fight and MFC World Champion has a habit of opening up his rivals’ defenses with combinations to the mid-section, and then he has the flexibility to unleash his long legs to go high and attack the head. If his shin finds its target, the effects can be devastating.