However, the legendary Englishman reversed his fortunes to score a first-round TKO at ONE 156: Eersel vs. Sadikovic.
As soon as the opening bell sounded inside the Singapore Indoor Stadium, Muangthai went at “Hitman” with low kicks. Harrison tried to counter, but the Thai’s punches and elbows kept him at bay.
The PK.Saenchai Muaythaigym representative then stepped forward and attacked with another low kick, only to throw a high kick seconds later. Harrison blocked, but the force of the kick dropped him to the canvas for the first official knockdown of the contest.
“Hitman” rose to his feet and beat the eight-count, but when the action resumed, Muangthai stung him again – this time, with a straight left. The British legend fell backward, and then he rolled onto his hands and knees while referee Justin Brown issued another eight-count.
But Harrison, showing the heart that has made him such a storied fighter, jumped back to his feet.
The action continued, and Muangthai, knowing a third and final knockdown in the round would win him the fight, pressed forward with high kicks, punches, and elbows. But Harrison stayed in the pocket, evaded a punch, and returned with a right hand that he snatched and flung from his back pocket.
With Muangthai drooped over, Harrison continued to attack until a left hook sent the Thai crashing to the canvas. He bounced up, spread his arms wide, and took his first eight-count.
Harrison, full of vigor, rushed in with a dizzying boxing combination and clipped Muangthai with a left hook. The PK.Saenchai Muaythaigym representative went down for the second time. But, once again, he returned to his feet.
With two knockdowns apiece, it was anyone’s fight at this point. The Bad Company standout, however, wanted it just a bit more.
Harrison stormed forward with another barrage of punches that overwhelmed Muangthai, and “Elbow Zombie” went down for the third and final time at the 2:19 mark of round one.
The victory bumped Harrison’s record to 90-24-2, scored him a whopping US$100,000 performance bonus, and earned him the next shot at ONE Bantamweight Muay Thai World Champion Nong-O Gaiyanghadao‘s belt.