ONE FC 19: Aoki retains title, Askren & Jadamba new champs

ONE FC: REIGN OF CHAMPIONS – Shinya Aoki & Ben Askren win as expected, Narantungalag Jadamba first Mongolian to win a world MMA title

Roger Huerta impresses in his return to the cage, Malaysian Ann Osman gets her first win

There were a total of three title-defence bouts on this card, marking the first time ever ONE Fighting Championship ever had more than one title fight in a single event. There was supposed to be four but guess they just couldn’t make the inaugural Middleweight championship happen in the end. It was a pretty decent night of fights at Dubai World Trade Centre with all bouts ended in either a first round finish or a decision.

Shinya Aoki (36-6) defended his ONE FC World Lightweight Championship title in the main event quick and easy with a submission against former UFC fighter Kamal Shalorus (9-4); was there any doubt that he’d win? Aoki is the best MMA grappler I’ve ever seen and sorry, Shalorus was no where near the Japanese’s class. The reigning champ went in straight to clinch Shalorus to the fences before transitioning to a double-leg takedown. He got held a while by a guillotine choke, Shalorus’ only defense was to stall fight ’cause you’re pretty much screwed as soon as Aoki got you to the ground. Aoki eventually advanced onto Shalorus’ back and executed the RNC (rear-naked choke). Referee Yuki Shimada asked if Shalorus was all right during the choke but he somehow failed to spot his first taps. But I’ll give Shimada the benefit of the doubt this time as Shalorus did look like he gave a thumbs up right before he tapped the first time, which might have confused Shimada. Shalorus tapped again immediately to get Shimada to finally come to his rescue. Aoki said during the post-fight interview that he’ll no longer drop to Featherweight anymore as the division now belongs to his fellow Evolve MMA teammate Herbert Burn (4-0), who also won on the night against Hiroshige Tanaka (10-2) via judges’ scorecard.

Shinya Aoki RNC chokes Kamal Shalorus in ONE FC 19 Reign of Champions

As for the ONE FC World Welterweight Championship, “Funky” Ben Askren (14-0) also won with ease but it took longer than it needed too. Askren, too, went straight to his specialty and usual gameplan as soon as the opening bell rang – wrestling and dominating on the ground. He took the then-champ Nobutatsu Suzuki (11-2-2) down in a matter of seconds and unleashed some serious ground and pound to the head and the Japanese couldn’t do anything about it, neither defend nor even move much, but the referee refused to stop the fight until after he got continuously bashed on the ground for like a whole freaking minute. It’s perhaps one of the most late stoppage I’ve ever seen live. There were probably 30 unnecessary punches too many. I hope Suzuki is  now all right and recovering well. It seemed as though the referees were trying to allow the title fights to go on longer rather than prioritising the safety of the fighters. As I said many times before, I feel that the refereeing in ONE FC is inconsistent.

Koji Oishi‘s (25-10) reign as the ONE FC World Featherweight Champion has come to an end after being outclassed by the underdog who defeated the former champ Honorio Banario. The 38-year-old Narantungalag Jadamba (10-3) was bigger, stronger, more aggressive and had very good cardio. He controlled the centre of the cage and had a consistently safe but stiff boxing stance with his hands up the entire time, while throwing plenty of powerful and accurate combos with a lot of punches and kicks connected to Oishi’s head, which bloodied his face and swelled up his eye.

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Oishi managed to get Jadamba in trouble in the third round with a strong punch out of no where but Jadamba survived and began throwing some flashy spinning back kicks. Jadambaa also got a few takedowns and was dominant on the ground and clinch. Jadamba still looked fresh in the fifth round, continuing his dominance while disregarding Oishi’s virtually no-longer damaging strikes. Before the fifth and last round ended, Oishi got held in Jadamba’s wrestling headlock but just laid there and allowed Jadamba to punch his head for like a whole minute. It was an easy decision win for the new champ Jadamba and this was the fight of the night to me. What an inspiration Jadamba is now for his country and all new MMA fighters, he started off with a 0-2 record before he started winning! He has certainly put Mongol to the map of MMA. Weird thing was that there wasn’t a post-fight interview like the others. How come? This man had just won your world title for crying out loud!

Former UFC star Roger Huerta (22-7-1) has returned to MMA after 2 long years since getting knocked out by Zorobabel Moreira back in 2012 (ONE FC 4: Destiny of Warriors) with a brutal soccer kick to the head on the ground, and he’s given ONE FC debutant Christian Holley (10-1) his first MMA career loss in the very first round via TKO through ground and pound after some violent knees to the head from side control. Would be interesting to see if he were to fight Eddie Ng next, and if he wins, he could challenge Aoki for the Lightweight title.

Ann Osman celebrates win against Ana Julaton in ONE FC 19 Reign of Champions

Our very own female fighter Ann Osman (1-1) has got her first MMA and ONE FC win after defeating American Ana Julaton (1-1) in the eyes of the judges. I didn’t get to watch the entire fight (no idea why undercard fights aren’t broadcast live) but it was a split decision and to some fans, they thought it was a controversial one. Our other Malaysian representative of night, Ali Yaakub, lost in his MMA debut after getting ousted in wrestling and grappling by Dejdamrong sor Amnuaysirichoke (2-0), who’s actually a fellow Muay Thai specialist but was converted to an improving MMA fighter at Evolve MMA gym in Singapore. Amnuaysirichoke took Yaakub down and applied the RND submission.

Official Full Results

The ONE Warrior Bonus: (strangely wasn’t mentioned, guess it wasn’t awarded?)

Main Card

Lightweight Title: Shinya Aoki def. Kamal Shalorus | Submission (RNC) | R1 2:15 mins
Welterweight Title: Ben Askren def. Nobutatsu Suzuki | TKO (Strikes) | R1 1:24 mins
Featherweight Title: Narantungalag Jadamba def. Koji Oishi | Unanimous Decision | 5 rounds
Lightweight: Roger Huerta def. Christian Holley | TKO (Strikes) | R1 3:13 mins
Light Heavyweight: James McSweeney def. Cristiano Kaminishi | Knockout | R1 1:17 mins
Featherweight: Herbert Burns def. Hiroshige Tanaka | Unanimous Decision | 3 rounds


Catchweight (76.5kg): Mohamad Walid def. Vaughn Donayre | Submission (Armbar) | R1 1:05 mins
Flyweight: Dejdamrong sor Amnuaysirichoke def. Ali Yaakub | Submission (RNC) | R1 2:34 mins
Flyweight: Ann Osman def. Ana Julaton | Split Decision | 3 rounds

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