By John Thio
A night filled with testosterone, explosive action and dubious calls, the Singapore Indoor Stadium hosted the blockbuster Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) event, ONE Fighting Championship: Honor & Glory. Fighters from all around the world with different fighting styles come together to compete against one another in one of the biggest world-class MMA events. A sold-out stadium that held a capacity of 12,000, the crowd explodes with excitement. For those uninformed, MMA is not just simple brawling, but complex techniques and strategies to gain the upper hand over the opponent. This is one of the main reasons why MMA is one of the most popular sport out there.
Singaporean’s first ONE FC fighter, Radeem Rahman, made a victorious return to the ring after almost three years due to an unfortunate series of injuries. The Singaporean had the enthusiastic home crowd backing him all the way through the fight, cheering his name for motivation. Despite this, it was a tough battle against Raymond Tan of Malaysia. Tan dominated the first round with a flurry of uppercuts and kicks, leaving Rahman frustrated. The second round told a different story, seeing Rahman being more aggressive and ultimately taking control.
The 26-year-old brought the Malaysian down and relentlessly went for the ground-and-pound and with Tan unable to defend and retaliate, referee halted the fight and Radeem took the win, much to the enjoyment of the home crowd.
Singapore-based local fan favourite Eddie “The Magician” Ng suffered a massive upset from the hands of Vincent Latoel, bringing his undefeated streak in ONE FC to an abrupt end. Latoel pummelled Ng with a massive right hook, bringing him to his knees. As quickly as he got up, he received straight blows by Latoel and he went down again.
However, Ng recovered within milliseconds to engage Latoel again, only to be smothered by referee Shimada, who brought the co-main event to an end, a decision met by jeers from the crowd.
When asked to comment on the referee’s controversial decision, Ng displayed class and sportsmanship by saying that the referees were there for the safety of the fighters and that he respected Shimada’s decision to stop the fight. He also pleaded with the fans to stand with him to support the referee’s decision.
Ben “Funky” Askren made an impressive ONE FC debut by defeating Bakhtiyar Abbasov in the first round. Abbasov started the round superbly, even taking Askren down. However, there was a reversal and Askren dominated the rest of the round, finishing the bout with an arm-triangle submission. The win extended his undefeated professional mixed martial arts record to thirteen wins.
- Welterweight fight: Ben Askren defeats Bakhtiyar by Submission at 4:21 mins of round 1
- Lightweight fight: Vincent Latoel defeats Eddie Ng by Knockout at 3:16 mins of round 1
- Featherweight fight: Jadambaa Narantungalag defeats Honorio Banario by Split Decision at 5:00 mins of round 3
- Lightweight fight: Caros Fodor defeats Willy Ni by Submission at 3:29 mins of round 1
- Featherweight fight: Major Overall defeats Bruno Pucci by Knockout at 2:52 mins of round 1
- Heavyweight fight: Chi Lewis Parry & Alain Ngalani declared No Contest
- Bantamweight fight: Radeem Rahman defeats Raymond Tan by TKO at 2:14 mins of round 2
- Catchweight fight: Nik Harris defeats Brad Robinson by Split Decision at 5:00 mins of round 3
- Bantamweight bout: Casey Suire defeats Stephen Langdown by Submission at 3:14 mins of round 1