ONE First Strike: Full Card Preview and Predictions

ONE Championship™ (ONE) announced the full card for ONE: FIRST STRIKE, which broadcasts live across the world on Friday, 15 October. The event features the first all-kickboxing main card in promotional history.

For those of you not familiar with ONE Championship, it is one of the premier MMA organizations, based out of Singapore. They feature mixed martial arts events, as well as kickboxing, grappling, and Muay Thai, making them the perfect one stop shop for combat sports fans. In addition to this, ONE does not permit cutting weight, boosting weight divisions by ~10 pounds and testing athletes for water content in their bodies.

In the main event, living legend and #1-ranked ONE featherweight kickboxer Giorgio Petrosyan faces #2-ranked Superbon for the inaugural ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Championship. Unfortunately, the heavily anticipated co-main event between Rodtang and Daniel Puertas has been cancelled due to COVID-19 issues from Rodtang.

Also featured on the card is the ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix — the most stacked eight-man kickboxing tournament in history — to determine the new #1 contender for the World Title. In the quarterfinal round, Marat Grigorian of Armenia faces Andy Souwer of the Netherlands, Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong of Thailand battles Tayfun Ozcan of Turkey, Samy Sana of France and Algeria faces Chingiz Allazov of Azerbaijan, and Enriko Kehl of Germany locks horns with Davit Kiria of Georgia. 

The full event card is as follows (minus the Rodtang bout).

Giorgio Petrosyan vs. Superbon (FTW Kickboxing Title)

Multiple-time Kickboxing World Champion Giorgio Petrosyan (104-2-2, 4-0 ONE) is one of the greatest and most dominant kickboxers of all time, having already accomplished an incredible amount in his sensational career. This includes two K-1 World MAX World Championships, a Glory Slam Tournament Championship, and several other prestigious titles. “The Doctor” etched his name into the history books once more when he defeated three other World Champions to win the most stacked tournament in his sport’s history, the ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix, in October of 2019.

Petrosyan has some of the most fluid technique you will see in kickboxing. His strike variety and range management is a thing of beauty, and he cuts angles perfectly. Even when he is able to hit his opponent, he is always one step ahead of their counter. While he certainly has KO power, his striking volume keeps him in the lead whether he finds the finish or not.

Superbon, Sitthichai ranked among top 5

Superbon Banchamek (111-34, 1-0 ONE) has been among the Muay Thai elites for years, claiming four titles in various promotions. Superbon has been a staple of the Kunlun Fight League, showing off his immense striking pedigree through his technique, absorbing little to no damage. A Muay Thai professional since 2005, Supoerbon has been competing with the best of the best for his entire career, becoming a pro at just fifteen years of age.

Suoerbon joined the ONE rankings last July, claiming a unanimous decision over current Featherweight Muay Thai champ Sitthichai extending his current win streak to nine. In that fight, he demonstrated his high-level talent opposite a very game opponent, piling up volume for the victory. He flows between his punches and kicks so well, and I particularly love the way he throws his right high kick after a counter hook. Superbon is FANTASTIC at checking leg kicks, always keeping his front leg almost bouncing. Though he only has 26 knockout wins among his 111 wins, that is not to say that Superbon does not have power. Rather, he is patient and does not leap on opportunities, enacting his vengeance through his superb technique.

Superbon is an incredibly fun fighter, and will certainly bring the action to Petrosyan. With that being said, I don’t see many avenues to victory for the Thai boxer. Not only does Petrosyan have the power advantage, his strike differential will keep him ahead on the scorecards. I see his angles and cage awareness making the difference here opposite Superbon, and expect him to win a wide decision or late knockout.

My Pick: Giorgio Petrosyan via Decision

Marat Grigorian vs. Andy Souwer (FTW Kickboxing GP)

My Pick: Marat Grigorian via Knockout

Sitthichai vs. Tayfun Ozcan (FTW Kickboxing GP)

My Pick: Sitthichai via Decision

Samy Sana vs. Chingiz Allazov (FTW Kickboxing GP)

My Pick: Samy Sana via Decision

Enriko Kehl vs. Davit Kiria (FTW Kickboxing GP)

My Pick: Enriko Khel via Decision

The ONE: FIRST STRIKE lead card is headlined by an explosive affair between Muay Thai superstars Saemapetch Fairtex and Tawanchai PK.Saenchai Muaythaigym, kicking off at 7:00 AM EST.

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