Fans of the stand-up arts are in for a treat, as ONE: FIRST STRIKE offers up a kickboxing-only card that features some of the biggest names in the sport.
The pace and intensity of the battles will make for a high-octane bill on Friday, 15 October, but the stakes are also incredibly high, which means every athlete will compete with everything they’ve got.
Here are the five biggest reasons you need to watch this epic striking showcase from Singapore.
#1 A Featherweight Kickboxing World Title Main Event
The most stacked division in combat sports will finally crown its first titleholder, as Giorgio “The Doctor” Petrosyan and Superbon square off for the inaugural ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Championship.
Petrosyan has been unstoppable since he entered ONE Super Series, going unbeaten in seven encounters so far. He claimed the 2019 ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix Title during this run, and now, he wants to capture the division’s golden belt.
The Thai star has said that he plans to press forward on “The Doctor” and push him for five rounds, but it’s extremely rare to see Petrosyan get shaken from his game plan.
Petrosyan’s sharp hands and incredible fight IQ will go up against Superbon’s heavy kicks and well-rounded offense.
With five rounds to separate them, expect to see the best of both men as they vie for the biggest prize in their sport.
#2 The Biggest Kickboxing World Grand Prix Begins
Before the World Title main event, the global fan base will get to see all the quarterfinal bouts of the greatest kickboxing tournament on the planet.
The second ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix gets underway at ONE: FIRST STRIKE, with eight incredible fighters on the hunt for the tournament’s prestigious silver belt.
The first installment delivered some memorable encounters, and this time the competitors are even hungrier to deliver as they chase World Grand Prix success.
Every participant is an elite-level World Champion in their own right, and every bout looks set to be a fast-paced war of skill and power.
The full line-up features Marat Grigorian vs. Andy “Souwer Power” Souwer, Sitthichai vs. Tayfun “Turbine” Ozcan, Samy “AK47” Sana vs. Chingiz “Chinga” Allazov, and Enriko “The Hurricane” Kehl vs. Davit Kiria.
All eight men will also have an eye on the main event, as the tournament winner will want their shot at World Title gold in 2022.
- It’s All Or Nothing For Andy Souwer In Kickboxing World Grand Prix
- Giorgio Petrosyan To Superbon: ‘Inside The Ring, There’s No Need To Talk’
- Sitthichai Hopes To Recapture Top Form, Expose Ozcan’s ‘Glass Chin’
#3 Will Grigorian Retire Souwer?
Grigorian is regarded by many as the best pound-for-pound striker in the world, and he will bring this momentum into his bout with Souwer — one of the most legendary kickboxers in history.
Both men will enter the Circle at very different stages of their careers. The Armenian-Belgian slugger is still trying to build his legacy, while “Souwer Power” wants to prove he has one more good run in him before he hangs up the gloves.
Souwer blasted his way to his first ONE Super Series win against “Bamboo Sword” Zhang Chunyu last time out and looked back in fine form, but hard-hitting Grigorian sees him as a necessary casualty on his road to greatness.
The Dutchman will not be fazed given his experience, though he will have to approach the Hemmers Gym standout with caution given his incredible knockout power.
Can Souwer show the world that he still has what it takes to hang with the elite, or will Grigorian send him off to retirement in this pivotal featherweight clash?
#4 Sitthichai Vs. Ozcan Will Finally Happen
Ozcan was devastated when an injury forced him out of his matchup with Sitthichai back at ONE: BATTLEGROUND, but “Killer Kid” jumped across to “the art of eight limbs” and defeated Tawanchai PK.Saenchai Muaythaigym to show that he is a supreme operator regardless of the rule set.
However, “Turbine” presents a completely different problem for the Thai in his return to the kickboxing ranks.
The Dutch-Turkish athlete will not trade on the outside in a technical battle. Instead, he’ll charge at Sitthichai with volume and ferocity as he tries to overwhelm the iconic eight-time Kickboxing and Muay Thai World Champion.
It’s nothing Sitthichai hasn’t seen before though, and he is the master of dismantling aggressive opponents with his long-range game and accurate counters.
An impressive showing from either man in this highly anticipated contest will mark them as one of the favorites to go all the way.
#5 Heavyweight Phenom Opacic Makes His Return
The featherweights might have most of the limelight, but the heavyweights plan on opening the show with a sizeable bang.
Opacic has back-to-back knockout wins in his two ONE Super Series showings so far, and he wants to continue his phenomenal ascent en route to securing a ONE Heavyweight Kickboxing World Title opportunity.
Schmid, however, knows his foe has the eyes of the world watching, and he hopes to steal some of that attention with a victory in their colossal kickboxing clash.
Because of that, this curtain-jerker is one that you can’t miss.