Saturday, July 28, 2018

BELINGON DERAILS NGUYEN'S THREE-DIVISION WORLD CHAMPION BID AND BECOMES THE NEW ONE INTERIM BANTAMWEIGHT WORLD CHAMP

Kevin Belingon of Team Lakay - New ONE Interim Bantamweight World Champion
Last Friday, July 27, 2018, the largest global sports media property in Asian history, ONE Championship™ (ONE), electrified the packed Mall of Asia Arena with another evening of authentic world-class martial arts action. The state-of-the-art showground played host to ONE: REIGN OF KINGS, featuring the absolute best in local and international martial arts talent. In the main event, hometown hero Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon of Baguio City, Philippines overcame a stiff challenge from two-division ONE World Champion Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen, winning by unanimous decision to claim the ONE Interim Bantamweight World Championship. 

MAIN EVENT: MARTIN NGUYEN vs KEVIN BELINGON

A  powerful right counter by Belingon
In the main event of ONE: REIGN OF KINGS, Filipino dynamo Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon derailed Martin Nguyen’s goal to become a three-division world champion by outclassing the ONE Featherweight and Lightweight World Champion with his striking superiority. With his hometown crowd cheering behind him, Belingon effortlessly picked Nguyen apart in the stand-up, jolting the two-division titleholder with stunning left hooks and perfectly-executed spinning back kicks. In the end, all three judges scored the bout in favor of Belingon to win by unanimous decision after an intense five-round affair, bringing home the ONE Interim Bantamweight World Championship.


One of several round-house kicks by Belingon
Martin Nguyen raises Kevin Belingon's arm to acknowledge and celebrate the New Champ. True sportsmanship at its finest.
Kevin Belingon, ONE Interim Bantamweight World Champion, stated: “I can’t explain this feeling, I’m the happiest athlete tonight. Thank you to all the people who came out to support me, and of course to ONE Championship, my team, my coaches and trainers, and my teammates. To Martin [Nguyen], it was an honor fighting you. You’re such a great athlete and champion. I trained very hard for this fight, just to get this belt. I’m proud to be a champion representing the Philippines. My friend Bibiano [Fernandes], I respect him as a champion, but we’re in the same weight class and I’m the top contender. So there is no escape in facing me. I hope you recover fast and we can make the fight this year.”


Kevin Belingon with Chatri Sityodtong, ONE Chairman and CEO and the ONE Ring Girls

Click Here to watch my YouTube video of the complete Belingon vs Nguyen Fight


SHINNON WIRATCHAI  vs  SHINYA AOKI


Shinya Aoki punishes Shinnon Wiratchi with elbows
In the co-main event of the evening, former ONE Lightweight World Champion Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki of Japan smoothly steered to a first-round stoppage victory over Thai martial arts superstar Shannon “OneShin” Wiratchai. It quickly became the beginning of the end for Wiratchai just minutes into the first round, as he was effortlessly taken down by Aoki. On the mat, Aoki barely gave Wiratchai room to breathe, raining down a torrent of punishing elbows that compelled the referee to step in and call a halt to the contest. The victory earned Aoki GoDaddy Knockout of the Night honors.



RENZO GRACIE vs YUKI KONDO


Renzo gracie with a rear naked choke on Yuki Kondo


Brazilian legend Renzo Gracie made a triumphant return to mixed martial arts competition after eight long years, having his hand raised in victory at the expense of Japanese martial arts pioneer Yuki Kondo. Following a lengthy, most boring feeling-out process between the two grizzled veterans in the first round, Gracie shifted gears in the second frame and immediately drove his foe to the mat. Taking Kondo’s back, Gracie fastened a wrenching rear naked choke with no hesitation, which left his opponent no choice but to tap.


The Jubilant Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Master, Renzo Gracie

EDWARD FOLAYANG vs AZIZ PAHRUDINOV




Folayang works on disabling Pahrudinov's legs which worked in his favor


Hometown hero Eduard “Landslide” Folayang of Baguio City, Philippines turned in another complete performance, earning a unanimous decision win over previously unbeaten Aziz Pahrudinov of Russia. Folayang operated behind a relentless stream of leg kicks that left Pahrudinov hampered throughout the three-round contest. Connecting on his combinations with laser-like precision, Folayang dominated the bout as the three judges sitting cageside awarded him the victory.



GARY TONON vs RAHUL RAJU



International grappling superstar Garry “The Lion Killer” Tonon of the United States was successful in his second appearance in the ONE Championship cage, defeating Rahul “The Kerala Krusher” Raju of India via submission in round three. After testing his striking abilities for the majority of the first two rounds, Tonon went back to his strengths in the third, taking the action to the canvas where he fastened a deep rear naked choke to seal the deal.



ARMEN PERTOSYAN vs CHRIS NGIMBI



After falling short in his ONE Super Series debut two months ago, two-time Muay Thai World Champion Chris Ngimbi sought the redemption that he desired, edging out Armen Petrosyan via split decision in their three-round catch weight kickboxing showdown. Although Petrosyan kept himself aggressive all throughout the contest, Ngimbi landed the more telling blows from bell to bell, which was enough to persuade two of three cageside judges to score in his favor.



PANICOS YUSUF vs HAN ZI HAO



In a ONE Super Series Muay Thai contest, former ONE Warrior Series entrant Panicos Yusuf of Cyprus earned a unanimous decision victory over Han Zi Hao of China after a gruelling three-round affair. Operating behind a sound game plan and well-placed strikes, Yusuf countered Han consistently with a myriad of combinations off the back foot. In the end, all three judges scored the bout in favor of Yusuf.



JOSHUA PACIO vs PONGSIRI MITSATIT



"The Pacio Lock", an arm lock twisting towards the upper back. An original Pacio submission move debuting on the international stage.

Former ONE World Title challenger Joshua “The Passion” Pacio of the Philippines notched his third-straight victory, authoring a spectacular submission victory over rising Thai superstar Pongsiri Mitsatit in the first round. After an emphatic slam to the canvas, Pacio finished the job with a straining armlock called the "Pacio Lock", leaving Mitsatit with no other choice but to tap.



CHUMUAKTONG FIGHTERMUAYTHAI vs BROWN PINAS



Former Lumpinee and Rajadamnern Stadium World Champion Chamuaktong Fightermuaythai of Thailand showcased his world-class striking skills, defeating challenger Brown Pinas of the Netherlands via unanimous decision. Making his ONE Super Series debut, Chamuaktong dazzled, putting his treacherous Muay Thai clinch game on full display, while connecting on a plethora of elbows and knees from close quarters. All three judges scored the bout in favor of Chamuaktong after three rounds.



RENE CATALAN vs STEFER RAHARDIAN





Filipino martial arts veteran Rene Catalan emerged as an early crowd favorite, bringing the Mall of Asia Arena crowd to their feet with a rousing performance. Over the course of three rounds, Catalan exhibited dynamic striking, feints, sweeping low leg kicks, and a powerful left hook that had highly-regarded opponent Stefer Rahardian of Indonesia in trouble on multiple occasions. In the end, all three judges scored the bout in favor of Catalan to win by unanimous decision.



SOR SEY vs XIE BIN




Kicking off ONE: REIGN OF KINGS was Chinese featherweight sensation “The Stalker” Xie Bin. After a brief grappling exchange on the mat, Xie made quick work of Cambodia’s Sor Sey, finishing with a deep guillotine choke that put his opponent to sleep early in the first round.



(Photos courtesy of One Championship)
Official results for ONE: REIGN OF KINGS

ONE Interim Bantamweight World Championship bout: Kevin Belingon defeats Martin Nguyen by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 5 rounds

Lightweight bout: Shinya Aoki defeats Shannon Wiratchai by TKO (Strikes) at 2:16 minutes of round 1

Welterweight bout: Renzo Gracie defeats Yuki Kondo by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 1:40 minutes of round 2

Lightweight bout: Eduard Folayang defeats Aziz Pahrudinov by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds

Lightweight bout: Garry Tonon defeats Rahul Raju by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 3:27 minutes of round 3

ONE Super Series (Muay Thai) Catch Weight (72.5kg) bout: Chris Ngimbi defeats Armen Petrosyan by Split Decision (SD) after 3 rounds

ONE Super Series (Muay Thai) Bantamweight bout: Panicos Yusuf defeats Han Zi Hao by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds

Strawweight bout: Joshua Pacio defeats Pongsiri Mitstatit by Submission (Armlock) at 3:37 minutes of round 1

ONE Super Series (Muay Thai) Catch Weight (68.0kg) bout: Chamuaktong Fightermuaythai defeats Brown Pinas by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds

Strawweight bout: Rene Catalan defeats Stefer Rahardian by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds

Featherweight bout: Xie Bin defeats Sor Sey by Submission (Guillotine) at 1:55 minutes of round 1


The Monchster with Team Lakay

Kevin "The Silencer" Belingon with his ONE Championship Belt at the Post Fight PressCon

For more updates on ONE Championship, please visit www.onefc.com, follow us on Twitter and Instagram @ONEChampionship, and like us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ONEChampionship.




Monch "Monchster" Henares is a feature writer for the Philippine Daily Inquirer's "Road Talk", media blogger @ MonchsterChronicles, tech and motoring specialist, inventor, and automotive engineer. He managed the motorpool for a limousine company in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. He is now based in Manila, Philippines and is the President of BuidMeUp Corp.
You may e-mail him at monchnrs@gmail.com
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