ONE Championship exited this weekend without a champion in their 145-pound weight class.
A day after John Lineker was stripped of his belt due to a weight miss, his fight against Fabricio de Andrade ended with a third-round no contest result that emerged following an illegal groin strike.
The outcome, which kept the ONE MMA Bantamweight Championship without a titleholder for now, headlined the promotion’s “Prime Video” event from the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
A close fight between Lineker and de Andrade came to an end due to a strike in the third round.
De Andrade landed an incredibly strong knee to the groin of Lineker, attempting to hit his body after rocking him with a previous shot. This blow caused the bout to get paused, allowing Lineker time to recover.
Lineker remained on the canvas in a great deal of pain for several minutes due to this strike. While he was able to return to his feet before the allocated recovery time expired, he was not in any shape to remain in the fight.
Because of this, the bout was ruled a no contest in the end.
Lineker was originally scheduled to defend his belt for the first time this weekend. But after he missed weight for his bout by half a pound on Thursday, he was stripped of his title.
A win on Friday wouldn’t allow Lineker to gain back the belt. However, de Andrade was still able to become champion if he was victorious in the main event.
Both fighters had big moments in prior rounds of the bout.
De Andrade started the fight strong, lighting Lineker up in the first round with punches. Lineker answered back with his own blitz of momentum a frame later, rocking de Andrade with a combination of hook punches to the head.
Lineker was battling an injury by the end of the second round, as his left eye had swollen completely shut due to a left cross punch that landed. It did not seem like there was any consideration for the fight to be stopped due to this injury at any point.
Friday marked the first time that de Andrade took a result in ONE that wasn’t a win. He came into this weekend on a five-fight winning streak, including a recent finish victory over high-ranked contender Kwon Won Il.
Eersel Earns Kickboxing Belt In Close Decision
Regian Eersel became a two-combat sport ONE champion this weekend, defeating Sinsamut Klinmee via split decision to become the promotion’s first-ever 170-pound Muay Thai champion.
Eersel had a hard-fought, close five-round battle against Klinmee to earn the vacant belt. They both fought conservative gameplans, never leaving themselves too exposed to shots and in turn not being able to pursue big moments.
Kicks were a large part of both fighers performances, frequently going to the legs and body of each other.
The most hectic moment of the fight arguably came in the closing minute, as Eersel was able to find an opening with his punches and land a some hard, clean shots.
Klinmee had more visible damage on his face between the two fighters by the end of the bout.
Eersel already had ONE’s kickboxing belt at 170 pounds prior to this weekend. He first gained that title in 2019 and has defended it three times in total. Going forward, he is now the name at the top of two different divisions.
Klinmee was given the title opportunity after scoring two finish wins this year, stopping Nieky Holzken and Liam Nolan with strikes.
Ruotolo Earns Grappling Belt
19-year-old grappling ace Kade Ruotolo put on a grappling showcase on Friday’s main card, submitting Uali Kurzhev with a heel hook to become ONE’s first grappling champion at 170 pounds.
Ruotolo submitted Kurzhev in the fifth minute of their bout, fully applying the submission before a tap emerged.
Ruotolo previously also attempted a darce choke against Kurzhev earlier in the fight.
Ruotolo, an ADCC World Champion, is now the second-ever grappling champion in ONE. The promotion crowned their inaugural champ at 135 pounds last month when Mikey Musumeci defeated Cleber Sousa.
Ruotolo won his ONE debut in May, beating Shinya Aoki on scorecards.
Sitthichai Makes Comeback To Defeat Boutasaa
Veteran Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong handed Mohammed Boutasaa his first ONE loss in a kickboxing bout this weekend, defeating him via unanimous decision after a back-and-forth battle.
Sitthichai made a late comeback against Boutasaa to win the fight on scorecards.
After a close first round, Boutasaa started to heat up in the second frame. He unloaded with strikes against a defensive Sitthichai during that round.
Sitthichai started to make a comeback in the final round, suddenly becoming the leader in the fight. He often countered the shots of Boutasaa in this round, evading a strike and then connecting with his own shot in return.
Boutasaa, a 23-year-old kickboxing prospect, was making his second ONE appearance. He won his promotional debut in May, defeating Davit Kiria on scorecards.
Sitthichai was appearing for the first time since competing in ONE’s 155-pound grand prix. He won in the first two rounds of that tournament, but lost in the final against Chingiz Allazov in March.
Gasanov Submits Kim Early In ONE Debut
Shamil Gasanov had a quick showing in his ONE debut on Friday night, submitting Kim Jae Woong in the first round with a rear naked choke.
Gasanov took the fight to the ground early with a takedown. He got on the back of Kim immediately, establishing a triangle with his legs before securing the choke and earning a tap.
Gasanov entered ONE with a flawless record of 12 wins, which he slowly but surely attained over the course of eight years.
Kim was one of the promotion’s top 155-pound fighters heading into this weekend. He was coming off a loss, albeit against Tang Kai, a name who has since gone on to earn a championship in the promotion.
The Rest of the Card
Jeremy Miado earned his fourth consecutive finish victory in the final prelim, dropping Danial Willaims in the third round to force a finish. The sharp striking of Miado hurt Williams numerous times in the fight before the fight-ending sequence. Williams was a big win for Miado, as he entered the fight after scoring three victories earlier this year.
Taiki Naito out-landed Amir Naseri in a Muay Thai bout to return to the win column, taking a unanimous decision victory after three rounds.
Mehdi Zatout spoiled the ONE debut of former GLORY Kickboxer Asa Ten Pow, causing a stoppage in between the first and second rounds of the fight. The bout was stopped before the second round due to an overhand right from Zatout that injured the left eye of Ten Pow. After the fight, Zatout announced that he is retiring from combat sports.
Noelle Grandjean won her ONE debut with a first-round finish against Lea Bivins in the first round with a right cross to the body. Bivins was appearing in an MMA fight for the first time in her career.
Bout 11: Yoon Chang Min def. Keanu Subba via Decision, Unanimous (MMA Bout)
Bout 10: Agilan Thani def. Ilja Stojanov via Submission, Rear Naked Choke (RD 2, 1:48) (MMA Bout)
Main Card (10:00PM EDT / 10:00AM MYT) (Prime Video)
Bout 9: John Lineker vs. Fabricio de Andrade via No Contest, Illegal Groin Strike (RD 3) (Vacant ONE MMA Bantamweight Championship) (145 lbs)
Bout 8: Regian Eersel def. Sinsamut Klinmee via Decision, Split (Vacant ONE Muay Thai Lightweight Championship) (170 lbs)
Bout 7: Kade Ruotolo def. Uali Kurzhev (RD 1, 4:26) (Vacant ONE Grappling Lightweight Championship) (170 lbs)
Bout 6: Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong def. Mohammed Boutasaa via Decision, Unanimous (Muay Thai Bout)
Bout 5: Shamil Gasanov def. Kim Jae Woong via Submission, Rear Naked Choke (RD 1, 2:09) (MMA Bout)
Lead Card (8:00PM EDT / 8:00AM MYT) (Prime Video)
Bout 4: Jeremy Miado def. Danial Williams via TKO, Strikes (RD 3, 0:31) (MMA Bout)
Bout 3: Taiki Naito def. Amir Naseri via Decision, Unanimous (Muay Thai Bout)
Bout 2: Mehdi Zatout def. Asa Ten Pow via TKO, Corner Stoppage (RD 1, 3:00) (Muay Thai Bout)
Bout 1: Noelle Grandjean def. Lea Bivins via TKO, Strikes (RD 1, 4:01) (MMA Bout)