5 ONE Championship Stars Who Retired In 2022
In many ways, 2022 was the biggest year in the history of ONE Championship.
The promotion added a number of new World Titles, greatly expanded its submission grappling roster, and premiered on streaming giant Amazon Prime Video Sports.
But along with those massive additions, several beloved ONE Championship athletes retired from competition after impressive careers.
Below, we look at five superstars who hung up their gloves this year and remember their contributions to the world’s largest martial arts organization.
Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke
With 19 thrilling MMA bouts inside the Circle and an incredible 350 kickboxing and Muay Thai fights to his name, Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke has certainly earned his retirement from combat sports.
After cementing himself as one of the best pure strikers on the planet, the Thai legend made his ONE Championship and MMA debut in 2014 at ONE: ERA OF CHAMPIONS.
Over the next eight years, Dejdamrong would become a force in the MMA world. The pinnacle of his career came in 2015 at ONE: WARRIOR’S QUEST when he defeated Roy Doliguez to capture the ONE Strawweight World Title.
And while Dejdamrong would lose the belt in his first official World Title defense, he continued to be a major player in the strawweight division for years to come, competing in unforgettable battles each time out.
John Wayne Parr
Throughout his iconic and lengthy career, Australian fan favorite John Wayne Parr did more than enough to earn the nickname “The Gunslinger.”
The Muay Thai stylist’s gregarious personality and firebrand style of striking endeared him to fans worldwide, making him a perfect addition to ONE Championship in 2021.
The former WMC Muay Thai World Champion left an indelible mark on the combat sports world and capped off his career with an epic retirement fight – followed by a memorable post-bout interview – against Eduard Folayang at ONE X this past March.
And while he didn’t get the victory against Folayang, the Australian’s showing captivated viewers and earned him an extra US$50,000 from a fan vote performance bonus.
Proud Algerian standout Mehdi Zatout was lucky enough to end his storied career with a spectacular victory.
A former ONE Bantamweight Kickboxing World Title challenger, “Diamond Heart” finished his electrifying run in ONE Championship with a first-round knockout of Asa Ten Pow this past October at ONE on Prime Video 3.
After the bout, an emotional Zatout announced his retirement and his intentions to spend more time with his family.
In recognition of his knockout win and memorable career, ONE Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong awarded Zatout with a performance bonus, sending him into the next chapter of his life with an extra US$50,000.
Beloved Brazilian knockout artist Cosmo Alexandre has done and seen just about everything in the combat sports world.
Never in a boring fight, “Good Boy” competed in kickboxing, Muay Thai, and MMA inside the ONE Championship Circle, wowing fans with his thunderous power and aggressive approach, regardless of the sport.
Afterward, the 40-year-old veteran told fans that he was officially walking away from professional competition. Still, Alexandre’s numerous knockouts will undoubtedly live on in highlight reels for years to come.
Few athletes have accomplished more in ONE Championship than Brandon Vera.
The Filipino-American fighter made his promotional debut in 2014, reeling off four consecutive victories to capture the ONE Heavyweight World Title and then defending it twice before losing to current divisional king Arjan Bhullar.
A skilled wrestler and talented Muay Thai striker, Vera consistently left fans in awe with his fight-stopping power (he finished each of his ONE Championship wins by way of first-round knockout) and shocking athleticism for a heavyweight fighter.
Adored by his rabid Filipino fan base, “The Truth” officially said goodbye after his final fight in Manila at ONE 164 earlier this month. Now, he can ride off into retirement knowing he was one of the organization’s biggest stars.