ONE Championship is back in Bangkok, Thailand with another blockbuster event, and the line-up for ONE: DREAMS OF GOLD is packed with martial arts superstars.
As fans might expect in the home of “the art of eight limbs,” there are a plethora of elite Muay Thai champions, but there are also big names from kickboxing, mixed martial arts, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Here is the rundown of the 16 World Champions set for action inside the Impact Arena this Friday, 16 August.
2 Decorated Main Event Stars
In the evening’s main event, ONE Flyweight Kickboxing World Champion “The Baby Shark” Petchdam Petchyindee Academy will put his strap on the line against six-time kickboxing World Champion Ilias Ennahachi.
Petchdam was already a WMC and Lumpinee Stadium Muay Thai World Champion when he entered ONE Super Series, but his biggest accomplishment came when he defeated Elias “The Sniper” Mahmoudi for the ONE gold back in May.
Dutch striker Ennahachi will debut in the world’s largest martial arts organization on Friday, and brings with him the Enfusion, WFL and Blade World Championships.
4 World Grand Prix Competitors
The biggest kickboxing tournament in history started with eight celebrated World Champions vying for a US$1 million prize. Now, only four are left, and they will all compete in the semifinals in Bangkok.
Giorgio “The Doctor” Petrosyan is a five-time kickboxing World Champion that has become known as the finest kickboxer of his era. The Armenian-Italian will face off against hard-hitting three-time Muay Thai World Champion, “Smokin” Jo Nattawut.
On the other side of the bracket, three-time Muay Thai and kickboxing World Champion Samy “AK47” Sana punched his ticket to the semis when he took out pre-tournament favorite Yodsanklai IWE Fairtex in Singapore.
He has another stern test ahead of him in Bangkok against four-time kickboxing World Champion, Dzhabar “Genghis Khan” Askerov.
4 More National Heroes
As well as Petchdam and Nattawut, the Bangkok faithful will have four more World Champion compatriots to get behind.
ONE Women’s Atomweight Muay Thai and Kickboxing World Champion Stamp Fairtex is set to resume her quest for a World Title in a third sport when she re-enters the mixed martial arts arena against Indian national champion boxer Asha “Knockout Queen” Roka.
She will be joined on the card by a true Thai legend who has done it all. Lerdsila Phuket Top Team has won eight Muay Thai World Championships, including three at the famous Rajadamnern Stadium. He will face Savvas Michael.
The local crowd in the Impact Arena will also throw its support behind two of the new generation of their nation’s heroes – three-time Muay Thai World Champion “Elbow Zombie” Muangthai PK.Saenchaimuaythaigym and Bangpleenoi Petchyindee Academy, who is a two-division WMC Muay Thai World Champion.
6 More International Stars
A score of leading Muay Thai athletes from around the world will also step into the Circle this Friday, beginning with Lion Fight Lightweight World Champion Ognjen Topic and three-time IFMA Muay Thai World Champion Alaverdi “Babyface Killer” Ramazanov who will go to battle in a bantamweight tilt.
WMC Muay Thai World Champion Savvas “The Baby Face Killer” Michael is another of the new breed of warriors in “the art of eight limbs,” and he will face Lerdsila, while Roar Combat League World Champion Liam Nolan is set to take on Bangpleenoi.
The lineup of World Title winners is completed by a pair of former World Champions that were crowned in The Home Of Martial Arts.
Alex “Little Rock” Silva is one of the rare few athletes to have reached the top in two different sports, as the Brazilian was a BJJ World Champion before he struck strawweight gold on the global stage. His next bout is against fellow grappler, Stefer “The Lion” Rahardian.
Hardened Japanese warrior Kotetsu “No Face” Boku was the first owner of ONE’s lightweight strap, though he is now targeting the top prize in the featherweight division. He will have to defeat Thanh Le to move toward that goal.