Moraes Wins Back His ONE Flyweight Title At ONE: Hero’s Ascent
ONE Championship sent the Mall of Asia Arena crowd into a frenzy last Friday night in Manila, with another thrilling evening of authentic martial arts action. The absolute best in local and international martial arts talent took to the ONE Championship cage at ONE: HERO’S ASCENT to showcase their incredible skills. In the main event, Adriano Moraes of Brazil was crowned the new ONE Flyweight World Champion with a unanimous decision victory over Geje Eustaquio of the Philippines.
Brazil’s Adriano “Mikinho” Moraes put together a comprehensive grappling performance, upsetting hometown hero and now former titleholder Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio to win by unanimous decision, capturing the ONE Flyweight World Championship. Although Eustaquio connected on the cleaner, stronger punches throughout the five-round title tiff, it was Moraes who dominated the grappling exchanges. At one point, Moraes caught Eustaquio in a dangerous leglock that almost finished the bout, but the Filipino refused to tap. In the end, all three judges scored the bout in favor of Moraes.
The undefeated Lowen Tynanes retained his perfect record with a first-round finish of former ONE Featherweight World Champion Honorio “The Rock” Banario in a ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix Quarter-Final matchup. After a brief exchange on the feet, Tynanes drove Banario to the mat with a single leg. On the ground, the American quickly took the mounted crucifix position and pounded Banario with sharp punches and elbows to earn the technical knockout victory.
In a spirited clash between two top flyweight contenders, former ONE World Title challenger Danny “The King” Kingad of the Philippines turned in a well-rounded performance, defeating Tatsumitsu “The Sweeper” Wada of Japan by unanimous decision. For three full rounds, it was Kingad who got the better of the standup exchanges. When the action hit the mat, Kingad also displayed superior grappling skills. In the end, all three judges scored the bout in favor of Kingad who earned a spot in the highly-anticipated ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix with the win.
Rodtang “The Iron Man” Jitmuangnon of Thailand remained impressive in his ONE Super Series campaign, running through newcomer Fahdi Khaled of Tunisia to win via unanimous decision. The multiple-time Muay Thai World Champion gave the Filipino fans a show as he pushed the action with an unending flurry of strikes that kept the Tunisian newcomer at bay. Khaled had no answer for Rodtang as the Thai star cruised to a clear decision win.
Dutch grappler Reinier De Ridder made quick work of China’s Fan Rong, winning via submission in the first round. The undefeated European mixed martial arts World Champion wasted little time in bringing the action to the ground as he took Fan down with ease. On the mat, De Ridder showed off his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu pedigree as he locked in a deep D’Arce Choke to put Fan to sleep in just under two minutes, announcing his arrival in ONE Championship’s stacked middleweight division.
Japanese striker Hiroki Akimoto overcame a knockdown in the first round to defeat Australian Josh “Timebomb” Tonna via unanimous decision in his ONE Super Series debut. The WFKO Karate Champion put on a striking clinic, picking Tonna apart with an array of thunderous kicks and powerful punches. A pair of knockdowns in the final round secured the win for Akimoto, who was dominant in his first ONE Championship appearance.
Thailand’s Bangpleenoi Petchyindee Academy was impressive in his ONE Super Series debut as he overwhelmed Brown Pinas of the Netherlands en route to a unanimous decision victory. The two-division WMC Muay Thai World Champion controlled the pace of the match as he punished Pinas with a relentless barrage of punches and kicks. Bangpleenoi scored a knockdown midway through the third round to seal the deal and earn his first win on the ONE Championship stage.
Algeria’s Elias Mahmoudi outstruck Japan’s Yukinori Ogasawara over the course of three rounds. Mahmoudi was on point in the opening frame, unloading a storm of thunderous kicks and pinpoint-accurate elbows on his opponent. Mahmoudi proved to be the faster and stronger man and was constantly a step ahead of his opponent in the succeeding rounds. In the end, all three judges scored the bout in favor of Mahmoudi.
Tang Kai of China left a lasting impression in his promotional debut, pulling off a statement victory over South Korea’s Sung Jong Lee. Living up to his reputation as a knockout artist, Tang got the job done in the second round, shutting the lights off on Lee with a thunderous high kick.
Japan’s Hiroaki Suzuki claimed his second-straight victory on the ONE Super Series stage, stopping Mohammed “Jordan Boy” Bin Mahmoud in the final seconds of the third round. Suzuki utilized his speed and power to connect on a handful of thudding strikes on Mahmoud, who responded with solid hooks and knees to the body. In the closing moments of the final frame, Suzuki stunned Mahmoud with a combination, earning him a technical knockout victory.
Setting the tone for an action-packed evening was a strawweight encounter between India’s Himanshu Kaushik and Indonesia’s Egi Rozten. Driven to claim his first victory in ONE Championship, Kaushik made quick work of Rozten, knocking out the Indonesian warrior with a barrage of punches in the first round.