The last quarter in ONE Championship has certainly been incredibly action-packed. While we have had our fair share of spectacular knockouts, we also enjoyed some impressively technical submission finishes.
Our awe-inspiring athletes have a penchant for executing some of the most beautiful submissions ever witnessed in the cage, and it happened time and time again over the past three months.
Let’s take a look at the four best submission finishes of the past quarter in ONE Championship.
#1 Bibiano Fernandes’ Quick Choke On Andrew Leone
Bibiano “The Flash” Fernandes of Brazil, who has been consistently considered one of the best bantamweights in the world, has undoubtedly achieved legendary status. Although the 37-year-old continues to face increasingly tough opposition, ONE’s most dominant titleholder just keeps getting better.
This past August, at ONE: KINGS & CONQUERORS in Macao, Fernandes faced American contender Andrew Leone, who vowed to give the champion his stiffest test to date. However, as “The Flash” has consistently proven throughout the years, he only gets better with age.
Fernandes made quick work of Leone while unveiling new dynamics in his offensive arsenal. After pounding Leone with a relentlessness never before witnessed from the five-time BJJ world champion, he finished matters on the ground with a classic rear-naked choke.
The most fearsome thing about Fernandes is that after over a decade of dominance, he looked the absolute best he has ever been in his most recent bout.
#2 Christian Lee Forces Keanu Subba To Tap
In a bout to establish a place among the featherweight division’s top competitors, 19-year-old Christian “The Warrior” Lee truly shined. Against Malaysian rival Keanu Subba, Lee entered the highly-anticipated match in August at ONE: QUEST FOR GREATNESS with a huge chip on his shoulder. It was a tough and grueling contest, but the Singaporean put in an inspiring performance, one that shows just how much promise his young career holds.
A rivalry at least two years in the making, the Lee versus. Subba matchup was in the pipeline for quite some time. While it was cancelled on two previous occasions, both athletes made sure nothing would impede the bout a third time, and it certainly lived up to its billing.
After having to overcome Subba’s pinpoint striking early on, Lee turned up the aggression in the grappling department, actively looking for various submission opportunities in unorthodox positions. The constant mat pressure inevitably broke Subba’s confidence, and “The Warrior” finally caught his opponent in an armbar in the third round to seal the victory.
#3 May Ooi Upsets Ann Osman With Rear-Naked Choke
At ONE: QUEST FOR GREATNESS in August, Singapore’s “Mighty” May Ooi made her promotional debut against the iconic Ann “Athena” Osman of Malaysia. The former Singaporean Olympic swimmer turned martial artist stepped into the ONE cage for the first time, and was undoubtedly looking to make a statement.
Before the bout, Ooi boldly predicted her victory, claiming she would win by first-round submission. It almost looked like it wasn’t going to happen. Osman enjoyed early success, knocking Ooi down and scored with ground-and-pound, but was unable to put the Singaporean away.
Ooi rallied, and with less than two minutes remaining in the opening frame, the former Olympian would make good on her promise. She took her opponent’s back and caught her in a deep rear-naked choke. “Athena” had no choice but to tap out.
It was an upset of huge proportions, as the Singaporean took home the victory on Malaysian soil. More importantly, it signified Ooi’s arrival on the biggest stage of martial arts, and as a new player in the blossoming women’s strawweight division.
#4 Jomary Torres Stuns Rika Ishige With Comeback Submission
Ishige, who had previously won her first two bouts by spectacular finish, has proven to be a talented grappler. Torres was quick to point out, however, that Ishige was severely lacking in the striking department, as the Filipina proceeded to test her opponent’s stand-up game.
After surviving several submission attempts while softening up the Thai in round one, Torres would then work to finish in round two, sensing that “Tinydoll” was slowly fading. Just before the midway point in the second frame, the Filipina striker surprisingly caught Ishige in a choke, pressed her up against the cage, and proceeded to pursue the submission until Ishige tapped out.