May 2, 2014

Mixed Martial Arts at MOA Arena on May 2

Get ready for more explosive Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) action as the world’s most exciting event returns to the Mall of Asia Arena on 02 May with a fight card featuring the world’s best fighters and local heroes. 

MMA has taken the world by a storm and millions of passionate fans in the Philippines have been eagerly awaiting the return of Asia’s biggest MMA event. With 10 bouts of world-class MMA scheduled for the evening, fans can look forward to watching MMA legend Bibiano “The Flash” Fernandes and local heroes like Eduard Folayang and Rey Docyogen back in action. 


This bout pits the best Asian bantamweight against the best bantamweight in Asia with the ONE FC Bantamweight World Championship title on the line. Bibiano Fernandes holds a 15-3 record and is a BJJ black belt who is also the reigning ONE FC Bantamweight World Champion. Before finding his home in ONE FC, "The Flash" has also won the DREAM Bantamweight Grand Prix and the DREAM Featherweight Grand Prix, emerging first out of a field of eight fighters on both occasions.

Fernandes may have an aura of complete invincibility, but in Masakatsu Ueda he is taking on an opponent who is more experienced and has a record with more wins and fewer defeats. Ueda’s record stands at an impressive 16-2-2 and he is a former Shooto World Champion who has beaten some of the best bantamweights in the world. The Japanese veteran also recently beat three separate opponents to become the ONE FC Bantamweight Grand Prix winner.

With a seven-fight win streak, Fernandes seems unstoppable but if anyone can halt the momentum of the Brazilian phenomenon it is the well rounded and highly experienced Ueda. The ONE FC Bantamweight World Championship title will be on the line and fireworks are guaranteed when two of the most dominant fighters the division has ever seen go head to head on 2 May.

Two of the top featherweights currently competing in Asia will make their promotional debuts when Rob Lisita and Yusuke Kawanago clash at ONE FC: RISE OF HEROES. Kawanago’s record is 13-3-2 and he is an Asia Pacific Featherweight Champion who has already beaten Lisita once, defeating him by unanimous decision to defend his belt in 2012. 

But the hard hitting Australian, whose record stands at 13-5, has not lost since that encounter with Kawanago, stopping each of his last three opponents. Lisita is thrilled by this opportunity to avenge that defeat and claims to have totally redeveloped his fighting style since their last encounter. 

There was immense excitement among MMA fans when Lisita’s ONE FC signing was announced because this is a featherweight who knows how to finish fights. Most of his victories have come inside the distance and he is equally adept at securing submission wins or highlight-reel KOs. Kawanago comes into ONE FC as a champion and is determined to work his way into contention for a shot at Koji Oishi’s belt, but Lisita is in the best form of his fighting career and after losing to Kawanago by decision the last time, will be determined to win decisively when they meet at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Manila.

James McSweeney is a top English mixed martial artist and kickboxer who has competed against some of the best heavyweights in the world, racking up numerous titles in the process. He is currently on the best streak of his career, with eight wins in his last 10 fights. McSweeney is a proven finisher and have gone to a decision only once in 23 fights. He brings probably the highest level of elite striking the heavyweight division has ever witnessed and is confident that there is no other striker who would dare to stand and trade with him in the ONE FC cage. 

Chris Lokteff is one of the top heavyweight prospects in the world. The Australian has amassed an impressive record of twelve wins and one loss at just 27 years of age. He made a remarkable ONE FC debut, convincingly defeating famed American wrestler Tony Johnson last November. After falling in love with the sport of MMA just 5 years ago, Lokteff does not have a single-dimensional view of combat and has trained equally hard in all aspects of his game. His diversity has been the key to him beating some of the top heavyweights in Asia and he will look to extend his winning streak when he faces McSweeney. The ONE FC Heavyweight division remains without a champion and the winner of this bout will likely earn a spot in the inaugural title bout.

Gianni Subba is one of ONE FC’s fastest rising stars having won all of his professional MMA fights via stoppages. The Malaysian has a perfect professional record of 3-0 but faces the greatest challenge of his MMA career when he takes on feared Filipino Muay Thai expert Eugene Toquero. 

Although Toquero suffered a disappointing decision defeat against Geje Eustqauo on his ONE FC debut, he gave fans a reason to rally behind him as he put on a spirited and skillful display that showcased his striking. He is determined to redeem himself against Subba and with 100% of his wins coming by way of TKO, he has the power to put the up and coming prospect away.

Subba has shown that he is capable of finishing opponents with either a submission or a KO/TKO, but he has never been the distance and 80% of Toquero’s bouts have also ended with a stoppage, so this flyweight matchup is unlikely to end up in the hands of the judges. Expect Toquero to go all out for the knockout as he is fighting in front of 20,000 fans in Manila, but Subba would love nothing more than to score an upset and defeat the Filipino in his hometown.

Aung La N Sang will be the first mixed martial artist of Myanmar descent to make it big on the world stage and to enter the ONE FC cage. He is a member of the Kachin, a group of indigenous people currently embroiled in civil war with the Myanmar army. This match will bear major historic significance for the people of Myanmar as one of their warriors enters the melee of Asian MMA in a bold step forward. Aung La N Sang left Myanmar to study in the United States, where he discovered Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and subsequently, mixed martial arts. Aung is nicknamed “The Burmese Python” for his constricting ability which has led him to nine submission wins.

Mahmoud Salama is a veteran of the Egyptian mixed martial arts scene. He has never been defeated in his home country, racking up all four of his wins by TKO. Salama boasts power in both hands and will look to knockout any opponent standing in his way. This clash against Aung represents the classic striker against grappler matchup and the striker, Salama, seeks to emerge victorious in this matchup.

Jujeath Nagaowa will make history when she enters the ONE FC cage at ONE FC: RISE OF HEROES, becoming the first Filipina mixed martial artist in Asia’s largest mixed martial arts organization. The former WBC Asia Atomweight Champion will be making the transition from boxing with an impressive resume that features 12 professional victories. Nagaowa has nifty footwork that she uses to get out of her opponents’ punches and knockout power in both hands. She will be looking to demonstrate her boxing skills along with her newly acquired mixed martial arts techniques as she makes her ONE FC debut in front of her fellow countrymen.

Jeet Toshi is a 7x kickboxing champion from India. Her illustrious kickboxing career has led her to coaching and training stints in Bahrain and Australia. As the pioneer for female mixed martial arts in India, she has paved the way for more women in the populous country to participate in the sport, and will look to make a statement by emerging victorious in this bout. But she will have to keep her focus as she faces a hometown girl supported by 20,000 passionate fans at the Mall of Asia Arena on 2 May if she hopes to clinch a win and get back to her winning ways in the ONE FC cage.

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