A lot more horsepower has been injected into ONE Championship’s first event of 2022.
On Friday, 14 January, the promotion will hold ONE: HEAVY HITTERS at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, and ONE Women’s Strawweight World Champion “The Panda” Xiong Jing Nan will defend her belt against #4-ranked contender Ayaka “Zombie” Miura in the main event.
In addition to that, mixed martial arts legend Khabib Nurmagomedov will be on hand for the promotional debut of his protege, Saygid Izagakhmaev.
Xiong has been a dominant force in the women’s strawweight mixed martial arts division.
The Chinese superstar, who owns a 16-2 career record, claimed the inaugural ONE Women’s Strawweight World Title in January 2018 and has successfully defended the strap five times.
Additionally, “The Panda” is her division’s all-time leader in knockouts with three.
But next, she will meet Miura, who appears to be her perfect foil.
The Japanese phenom holds an impressive 11-3 (1 NC) career record, a 64 percent finishing rate, and has four submission victories during her ONE tenure, all of which have come by her trademark scarf-hold Americana.
The Tribe Tokyo MMA product can also claim a record of her own, as she owns the most submission victories in the division – also currently standing at three.
With records to be broken – and ONE gold on the line – fans should expect these two warriors to search for a defining finish when they put their polar-opposite specialties against each other in the Circle on 14 January.
The show will also mark the highly anticipated promotional debut of Izagakhmaev, who’s been training with Nurmagomedov for the past 11 years.
Izagakhmaev is a Sambo World Champion who owns a 19-2 mixed martial arts record and a 74 percent finishing rate that’s mostly comprised of submission wins.
The Dagestani will be looking to make his 20th victory a special one – especially with “The Eagle” by his side.
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His first assignment in the Circle will come in a lightweight contest against James Nakashima, a former ONE Welterweight World Title challenger who is settling into his new weight class.
Nakashima sports a 12-2 record, and though he’s known primarily for his wrestling pedigree, the American southpaw has trained his striking extensively with kickboxing icon Giorgio “The Doctor” Petrosyan.
Along with adding another victory to his slate, spoiling Izagakhmaev’s debut could potentially springboard Nakashima into ONE’s official lightweight rankings.
More bouts for ONE: HEAVY HITTERS will be announced in the coming days.
Finally, the organization confirmed the dates for the first quarter of its 2022 events calendar.
The promotion’s second event of the year, ONE: ONLY THE BRAVE, will be held on 28 January, and four additional live shows will be broadcast on 11 February, 25 February, 11 March, and 26 March.