ONE Championship returns to Manila, Philippines, this Friday, April 12, for an event that is topped with two excellent title fights.
The main event of the evening is a ONE Featherweight Championship bout that will see Martin Nguyen attempt to defend his title from Narantungalag Jadambaa.
In the co-main event, Joshua Pacio will challenge Yosuke Saruta for the ONE Strawweight Championship.
The fight card also features several other exciting fights and fighters. Fans at the Mall of Asia Arena will see Gustavo Balart fight for the first time with ONE Championship. He’ll be facing Tatsumitsu Wada in the first-round of the ONE Flyweight Grand Prix. Bi Nguyen is also set to make her debut with the promotion.
ONE Championship: Roots of Honor fight card
ONE Championship: Roots of Honor takes place this Friday, April 12, and will commence at 6 pm local time (6 am ET, 10 am GMT) in Manila, Philippines.
The prelims will be live streamed on Facebook and Twitter via ONE Championship. The stream will also be available on B/R Live and the ONE Super App (Android and iOS).
The main card will be exclusively streamed on B/R Live in the United States and on the ONE Super App for all other countries.
- Martin Nguyen vs. Narantungalag Jadambaa – 🏆
- Yosuke Saruta vs. Joshua Pacio – 🏆
- Tatsumitsu Wada vs. Gustavo Balart
- Leandro Issa vs. Fu Chang Xin
- Ibrahim El Bouni vs. Andrei Stoica – Kickboxing
- Luis Santos vs. James Nakashima
- Edward Kelly vs. Sung Jong Lee
- Eric Kelly vs. Kwon Won Il
- Saemapetch Fairtex vs. Ognjen Topic – Muay Thai
- Ahmad Qais Jasoor vs. Xie Bin
- Niko Soe vs. Eko Roni Saputra
- Lerdsila Phuket Top Team vs. Momotaro – Muay Thai
- Bi Nguyen vs. Dwi Ani Retno Wulan
- Ramon Gonzales vs. Akihiro Fujisawa
Martin Nguyen vs. Narantungalag Jadambaa
ONE Featherweight Championship
It’s been a rough trot for Martin Nguyen since he was awarded ONE Championship’s Martial Artist of the Year in 2017. “The Situ-Asian” rose to fame after crushing the previously unbeaten Marat Gafurov to win the featherweight title in August 2017. He then backed it up with a legitimately terrifying knockout of lightweight champion Eduard Folayang in November 2017.
Nguyen was a two-division champion and sought more. In his next fight, he challenged Bibiano Fernandes for the bantamweight title but lost a tight split decision. Until that day, Nguyen had never made it to the scorecards. He’d finished all of his opponents and only ever been defeated by Gafurov when he only had four fights under his belt.
Since then, however, the 30-year-old has been tied to decision outcomes in his next two fights. He successfully defended his title against current lightweight challenger Christian Lee before then attempting to earn another shot at Fernandes. Nguyen was matched against tough Team Lakay fighter Kevin Belingon in an interim featherweight title fight in July last year but would go on to lose a unanimous decision after never really kicking into gear.
Now training at Hard Knocks 365 in the United States, Nguyen told The Body Lock that he is ‘hungry again’ and is seeking a stoppage victory this Friday.
Nguyen is facing Narantungalag Jadambaa, a former champion of the division who lost his title to Gafurov in 2015 and failed to reclaim it later in 2016. The talented Mongolian fighter is renowned for his strength in many areas. Despite losing to Gafurov twice, Jadambaa at times caused the Russian champion plenty of trouble with his decent takedown defense and expertise in the clinch position. Jadambaa also escaped multiple submission attempts from Gafurov, a fact that separates him from the majority of Gafurov’s opponents.
After a long layoff from competition following his second defeat at the hands of Gafurov, Jamambaa returned to ONE Championship in June last year to defeat Edward Kelly via second-round ground and pound. Less than one month later, Jadambaa defeated Kazuki Tokudome and cemented himself as a top contender in the division again. He’s since been waiting for his opportunity to challenge Nguyen for the title.
Jake Nichols is The Body Lock's Editor in Chief. Previously, he was the MMA Editor at RealSport.