5 World Title Fights We Need To See In The Second Half Of 2022
The global fan base has already been treated to some spectacular battles this year, but there’s plenty more to get excited about.
With dangerous contenders in every division, there are plenty of intriguing fights to make in the coming months.
Here, we pick five of the top World Title matchups we’d love to witness inside the ONE Championship Circle in the second half of 2022.
Arjan Bhullar vs. Anatoly Malykhin
While ONE Heavyweight World Champion Arjan “Singh” Bhullar was sidelined, Anatoly “Sladkiy” Malykhin continued his ascent and cemented his position among the elite by claiming the ONE Interim Heavyweight World Title.
With Bhullar now itching to return, the obvious fight to make is the title unification bout between the two heavyweight kingpins.
In terms of skills, both men are incredible wrestlers with impressive stand-up arsenals who can win a contest in any range – but there’s more to it than the stylistic matchup.
Bhullar and Malykhin have established a long-running rivalry, with “Sladkiy” in particular calling out the Canadian-Indian star for not stepping up to fight sooner.
The Russian feels like he’s the division’s true king, but “Singh” is not on the same page and thinks he’ll teach his foe a lesson in humility when they finally face off.
It’s always going to be entertaining when the best heavyweights collide, but when there’s gold and pride at stake on both sides, expect an even more fierce clash of titans.
Angela Lee vs. Ham Seo Hee
ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion “Unstoppable” Angela Lee looked nothing short of phenomenal in her return to action against Stamp Fairtex at ONE X in March, proving that her time away to start her family did not set her back.
Meanwhile, South Korean star “Hamzzang” Ham Seo Hee put her name into contention with a win over #3 contender Denice “Lycan Queen” Zamboanga and then kept it there with another victory over the Filipina at ONE X.
Those results have put Lee and Ham on an inevitable collision course that will surely come to fruition before the year is out.
“Unstoppable’s” impressive all-around game – especially her potent submission skills – means that she can finish any challenger, but “Hamzzang’s” s tenacity and striking aggression are hard to handle.
Moreover, the South Korean is currently riding an eight-fight winning streak, and she believes her stand-up firepower could overwhelm the atomweight queen.
Up against Lee’s famous durability, it will make for a fascinating contest between two of the top female mixed martial artists on the planet.
Nong-O Gaiyanghadao vs. Liam Harrison
After returning from retirement, Nong-O Gaiyanghadao has positioned himself as arguably the most dominant force in all of ONE Super Series.
The Thai icon has rarely encountered trouble during his reign as the ONE Bantamweight Muay Thai World Champion – going 8-0 in ONE overall – and he’s dispatched the last three challengers with stunning KOs.
Five men have tried and failed to take the gold from Nong-O’s grasp, but Liam “Hitman” Harrison thinks he’s the one with the best chance to finish the job.
The hard-hitting Brit defeated “Elbow Zombie” Muangthai PK.Saenchai in the most action-packed round of combat ever seen inside the ONE Circle at ONE 156, showing he owns the resilience to bounce back and the power to finish anybody.
While Nong-O hasn’t slowed down, he also hasn’t come across many punchers like “Hitman,” who will willingly trade shots at the center of the Circle.
Whether Harrison can take the Evolve man’s belt remains to be seen, but fans can be sure that whatever transpires between them will be spectacular.
Superbon Singha Mawynn vs. Chingiz Allazov
Superbon Singha Mawynn’s run in ONE Super Series has established him as the best featherweight kickboxer on the planet.
The reigning ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Champion won the belt with a jaw-dropping KO of legendary striker Giorgio “The Doctor” Petrosyan, and he defended the gold with a five-round domination of pound-for-pound superstar Marat Grigorian.
The Thai is in the best form of his life, but so is Chingiz “Chinga” Allazov, who earned the next crack at Superbon by winning the ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix.
Allazov was incredible throughout the prestigious tournament, scoring a pair of knockouts and then earning a clear decision win over multiple-time World Champion Sitthichai “Killer Kid” Sitsongpeenong at ONE X.
Allazov looks stronger and more powerful than ever, and his in-your-face but technical style could be the antidote to Superbon’s slick, long-range weapons and hurtful knees.
Both men are at the peak of their careers, and it will be a masterclass of stand-up skills when they go head-to-head.
Thanh Le vs. Tang Kai
A showdown between featherweight wrecking machines Thanh Le and Tang Kai is coming, and it will offer up ferocity and finesse in equal measure.
ONE Featherweight World Champion Le has earned and then defended his crown with a 5-0 run in ONE Championship. All five victories have come by knockout, including a shocking 56-second finish of grappling star Garry Tonon.
On the other side, #1-ranked Tang is 6-0 in ONE with four knockouts. He’s finished his last three fights, with the most recent triumph coming against then-top contender Kim Jae Woong.
Both athletes possess precise striking that combines with their concussive power to open up bout-ending opportunities with any limb.
That said, neither man has faced an opponent with this level of skill and physical attributes, and that’s what will make their World Title tussle so interesting.
Le and Tang will have up to five rounds to figure out whose strikes are most effective, although there’s very little chance of it going that far.