Thanh Le Shocks Ilya Freymanov With First-Round Submission To Capture Interim Featherweight MMA World Title
Thanh Le needed just over one minute to capture the ONE Interim Featherweight MMA World Title – and he did so in surprising fashion.
Known primarily as a dangerous striker, the Vietnamese-American superstar finished surging Russian contender Ilya Freymanov with a heel hook submission in the main event of ONE Fight Night 15 on Prime Video in U.S. primetime on Friday, October 6.
The two athletes threw down at the iconic Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, and wasted no time in getting the action started.
After a feeling-out process that lasted mere seconds on the feet, Le – a former undisputed World Champion in the division – and #3-ranked Freymanov briefly exchanged strikes before they met in the clinch.
The fight quickly moved to the canvas, where the 38-year-old Le immediately began attacking a leg lock from the bottom position. A few seconds later, he secured the heel hook, bringing an end to the clash after just 1:02.
It was only the second submission win of Le’s MMA career while moving his professional record to 14-3 and keeping his 100 percent finishing rate intact. Moreover, it earned him a well-deserved US$50,000 performance bonus.
Most importantly, the win took him one massive step closer to reclaiming the undisputed World Title he once held.
Now the interim featherweight MMA king, Le’s next fight will be a unification showdown with the man who took his gold last August – reigning ONE Featherweight MMA World Champion Tang Kai.