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ONE Championship Century Part I – Overlooked Prelims

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ONE Championship century part I

ONE Championship century is a two-part event that will commemorate the organisation’s hundredth show. The event will take place in Tokyo, Japan on the 13th of October 2019. ONE Championship century will feature 28 martial arts champions and seven title fights.

With a card as stacked as this, it is no surprise that some exciting fights have fallen to the prelims and thus are being overlooked by a lot of MMA fans.

Yushin Okami vs Agilan Thani

Agilan Thani

Japan’s Yushin Okami (35-14) will face former welterweight title challenger Agilan Thani (9-3) in the during the prelims of ONE Century part I.

Thani returned to winning ways in his last outing when he ruined Yoshihiro ‘Sexy Yama’ Akiyama’s (14-7) return to MMA with a decision victory.

Thani’s has three loses to his name so far in his career. These three losses have come against two ONE Championship welterweight champions in Ben Askren (19-1) and Zebaztian Kadestam (12-4). Thani’s other loss came against the same opponent who defeated Okami’s in his ONE Championship debut, Kiamrian Abbasov (21-4).

Okami will come into the fight on a three-fight losing streak. Okami lost his ONE Championship debut against Abbasov and then also lost his next fight against former LFA champion James Nakashima (12-0).

Why this fight is being overlooked

I believe this fight has been hard done by only getting a preliminary spot on the card. Thani’s last outing against Akiyama was given the co-main event spot on the Stamp Fairtex vs Alma Juiku card. The placement of this fight means a lot of people won’t realise this fight is even taking place during ONE Championship century part I.

My pick

Agilan Thani via decision. I think that the relentless pace, pressure and wrestling Thani brings will be too much for the Japanese martial arts icon in this one.

Itsuki Hirata vs Rika Ishige

Itsuki Hirata submitting Angelie Sabanal

Two fan favourites will meet during the prelims of ONE Championship Century part I in the women’s atomweight division. Rika Ishige (4-3) will come into the fight hoping to return to winning ways, after her decision loss to Nou Srey Pov (1-1). Ishige has had a mixed bag of results so far with a record of 2-2 in her last four fights.

Itsuki Hirata (4-0), on the other hand, will make her second ONE Championship appearance as an undefeated fighter boasting a four-fight win streak.

During her ONE Championship debut Hirata showed why she was a heavy favourite with a lot of hype behind her, making short work of Angelie Sabanal (1-2). Hirata submitted Sabanal with an Americana just 2 minutes of 59 seconds into the fight. It is also worth noting that Sabanal’s only professional win to date came by decision against Hirata’s next opponent, Ishige.

Why this fight is being overlooked

This fight features two young up and coming fighters who not many MMA fans outside of devote ONE Championship followers will have heard of. Although, if any MMA fan watches this fight I’m positive they will become new fans of these two ladies.

Hirata is someone who I believe will become a big threat in the atomweight division in the future, if she improves her striking. I’m looking forward to seeing the strides she has made since her win over Sabanal.

This is a contest that both of the main event competitors, Angela Lee (9-2) and Xiong Jing Nan (14-1) should pay close attention to.

My pick

Itsuki Hirata via 2nd round submission. There’s no doubt that Ishige has improved since her loss to Sabanal but I can’t see Ishige managing to knock Hirata out, and when you face an opponent as skilled in Judo as Hirata it is only a matter of time before the fight goes to the ground. When the fight goes to the ground I can see Hirata making short work of her opponent yet again.

Phoe Thaw vs Yoon Chang Min

Phoe Thaw celebrating a KO win

The third overlooked prelim will see Myanmar’s knockout artist and lethwei practitioner Phoe Thaw (8-1) return to face Yoon Chang Min (2-1) in the featherweight division.

Thaw will return at ONE Championship Century part I on a two-fight win streak. Thaw bounced back from his submission loss to Kevin Subba (7-4), in emphatic fashion by devastatingly stopping both Yohan Mulia Legowo (8-8) and Victorio Senduk (3-3).

After losing his professional debut against Takeaki Kinoshita (1-2-1) in Fighting Agent War season 3, Yoon Chang Min made his ONE Championship debut. Since joining ONE Championship Min has fought twice and won both times, which means he will also enter the fight on a two-fight win streak.

Why this fight is being overlooked

Both of these fighters are relatively unknown. Min has only had three fights so far in his professional career and Thaw had only fought on cards in his home country of Myanmar until his most recent victory over Senduk. If anyone MMA fans have the time to look up some of Thaw’s past fights I can guarantee that they won’t be disappointed.

My pick

Phoe Thaw via 1st TKO. I believe that Thaw’s experience, toughness and knockout power will ultimately prove to be too much for Min.

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  • Itsuki Hirata article.
  • Angela Lee vs Xiong Jing Nan 2 article.

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