This past Thursday, 19 July, a slew of promising martial artists displayed their talent and potential on Rich Franklin’s ONE Warrior Series Season Two mid-season finale.
The invite-only event, which streamed live from Singapore, featured an action-filled 15-bout card where prospects showcased their immense growth and development, in the hopes of landing a contract with ONE Championship.
Although there were no contracts given out, Rich Franklin, CEO of ONE Warrior Series, handed out five Warrior Bonuses to Mark Cuizon, Ismael Bandiwan, Ali Motamed, Mark Fairtex Abelardo, and Anita Karim.
The event contained several outstanding finishes, a handful of compelling three-round affairs, and a couple of quick stoppages. Here are just four of the night’s best highlights, and to watch all the action, simply use the ONE Super App.
Eto Kimihiro’s Decisive Top Game
Eto Kimihiro thoroughly demonstrated his dominance in Singapore.
The DEEP veteran collided with Yusaku Inoue in an all-Japan lightweight affair, and used a smothering top game to exhaust his adversary.
After nearly ending the bout in the first round with an arm-triangle choke, Kimihiro continued to overwhelm his nemesis with his grappling superiority in the second frame.
The green-haired Japanese athlete operated from half guard, and he damaged Inoue by raining down fierce elbows and punches to the face.
With time winding down in round two and his opponent fading quickly, Kimihiro locked in an arm-triangle from the half guard position. By that point, Inoue had enough, and decided to tap out.
Kimihiro may not have had the fastest victory of the night, but he was by far the most dominant athlete at the show.
A Bantamweight Thriller
Both competitors engaged for the entirety of their 15-minute bantamweight match, but Abelardo pulled away with the decision victory.
Abelardo, a New Zealander who represents the Fairtex Training Center in Pattaya, Thailand, may not have produced the volume or varied attack of his Iranian rival, but he was more effective and damaging with his striking.
“Tyson” was tight in his attack and utilized his power punching, which frequently found the mark. Also, he landed a pair of huge takedowns in the last few minutes of the contest, which may have helped sway the judges to giving him the unanimous decision win.
It was a valiant effort from Motamed. Even though he lost, the Team Envisage MMA product battled courageously, and must have won some fans with an incredible performance.
Zoltsetseg Shinechagtga’s 58-Second KO
Zoltsetseg Shinechagtga provided entertainment, due to both his explosive knockout power and his in-ring antics.
The Mongolian showman displayed excellent striking and phenomenal head movement in his featherweight tilt with Japan’s Akuri Ronda.
Shinechagtga constantly switched stances, bounced around the ring, evaded many of his rival’s punches, and connected with an assortment of stiff strikes. In fact, he looked like he had more energy than a can of Red Bull.
The end came at the 58-second mark. Shinechagtga masterfully sidestepped Ronda’s jab with a stunning jab of his own, and naturally landed on the left side of his rival’s body. With an open target, the Mongolian crumpled the Japanese athlete with a left hook to the temple.
Emmanuel Onyedikachi Leg Kicks His Way To Victory
Emmanuel “The Biafran Warrior” Onyedikachi may not have boasted his opponent’s mixed martial arts experience, but he overcame that with explosiveness, pure skill, and a fundamentally sound game plan.
The Nigerian Kun Khmer specialist defeated Sandeep Kumar Dahiya in a middleweight showdown.
From the opening bell, Onyedikachi utilized leg kicks to slow down the 16-bout veteran, which worked like a charm. While he threatened with his hands, he attacked with punishing kicks to the Indian southpaw’s lead leg.
Nearly halfway into the first stanza, “The Biafran Warrior” threw a twist into his strategy, as he launched a high kick, followed by a cross, which rocked Dahiya. Although the Indian did well to recover, one more thunderous leg kick from the Nigerian caused him to surrender from the contest.
The Night’s Final Results
- Lightweight – Eto Kimihiro defeats Yusaku Inoue via submission (arm-triangle choke) in round two
- Lightweight – JD Fairtex Hardwick defeats Davaabayar Enkhtaivan via submission (rear-naked choke) in round one
- Bantamweight – Mark Fairtex Abelardo defeats Ali Motamed via unanimous decision
- Flyweight – Saharat Kongsawat defeats Adib Sulaiman via KO in round two
- Atomweight – Stamp Fairtex defeats Rashi Shinde via KO in round one
- Bantamweight – Michael Walker defeats Shafkat Khodzhakulov via submission (rear-naked choke) in round one
- Flyweight – Mark Cuizon defeats Ismael Bandiwan via unanimous decision
- Featherweight – Zoltsetseg Shinechagtga defeats Akuri Ronda via KO in round one
- Strawweight – Alex Fong defeats Sanya Kongkatonk via submission (triangle choke) in round one
- Bantamweight – Michael Fangki defeats Chan Samart via TKO in round one
- Middleweight – Emmanuel Onyedikachi defeats Sandeep Kumar Dahiya via TKO in round one
- Atomweight – Edilah Johany defeats Neha Kashyap via submission (rear-naked choke) in round one
- Strawweight – Ryuoto Sawada defeats Mohd Fouzein via submission (guillotine choke) in round one
- Bantamweight – Punnya Sai defeats Sai Nyan Lin via submission (rear-naked choke) in round one
- Atomweight – Nyrene Crowley defeats Anita Karim via submission (rear-naked choke) in round one