Anissa “C18” Meksen joined ONE Championship with a single goal in mind – to become a two-sport ONE World Champion.
The ambitious 33-year-old took a step in the right direction on Friday, 3 September, by scoring a second-round TKO win over Cristina Morales in their ONE Super Series kickboxing atomweight bout at ONE: EMPOWER.
Meksen went straight to work in round one, throwing an innumerable amount of punches at Morales, who, to her credit, did her best to remain standing amid the whirlwind.
The Spaniard swung wildly to try to counter Meksen’s accuracy, but she left herself open for rib-damaging body kicks from “C18.” Morales started to find her range toward the end of the stanza, however, and worked the body of the French star with hooks.
In the second canto, Morales’ confidence showed in her punches. She came out swinging and made it difficult for Meksen to land her own furious combinations.
The French-Algerian was able to stick jabs in the face of her rival, but soon, Morales started to pull ahead and stayed too busy for Meksen to find her rhythm. An accidental clash of heads stopped the bout – but only for a few seconds.
When the action resumed, Meksen exploded with a right high kick that wrapped itself around Morales’ neck. The Spaniard staggered backward, and “C18” traced her path while throwing over a dozen left hooks and straight rights.
Two consecutive left hooks then sent Morales down for the count.
The Spanish athlete got back up to her feet, but after referee Olivier Coste counted to eight, he asked her to put up her guard and step forward. She barely budged off the Circle Wall. With fighter safety as the top priority, he called off the bout at 2:27 of round two.
Meksen’s TKO victory brought her astonishing professional record in the striking arts to 101-5 and may have catapulted her toward a showdown with one of the top-five kickboxers in the atomweight division.