ONE Championship started the first quarter of 2018 with some history-defining moments.
There was the inauguration of the ONE Women’s Strawweight World Championship, the crowning of a second two-division ONE World Champion, and a slew of record-setting knockouts.
The last five events have been nothing but stellar, and the knockouts are a big reason for that. With that in mind, here are the top five KOs from this past quarter.
#1 Aung La N Sang’s History-Making Knockout
He made history in June 2017 by dethroning formerly-unbeaten kingpin Vitaly Bigdash for the ONE Middleweight World Title, and became Myanmar’s first world champion in sports. And then in November, he submitted the hulking Alain “The Panther” Ngalani in the promotion’s first-ever Open Weight Super-Bout.
Despite all of this, Aung La N Sang had an even more impressive feat this past February. The 32-year-old returned home to Yangon, Myanmar, to face Brazil’s Alexandre “Bebezao” Machado at ONE: QUEST FOR GOLD for the vacant ONE Light Heavyweight World Championship.
“The Burmese Python” made it look easy, as he calmly stalked the Brazilian, lined him up, and unleashed a massive high roundhouse kick. The powerful blow shattered Machado’s defenses, and caused him to stumble backwards against the cage. The local hero finished him off with some final punches to claim the victory, and the belt, in just 56 seconds.
With a single kick, Aung La N Sang made quite a bit of history. He becomes only the second two-division ONE World Champion, and set a pair of records for the fastest knockout and stoppage victory in the light heavyweight division.
#2 Edward Kelly’s Ferocious Combination
After getting his three-bout win streak snapped last August, the Philippines’ Edward “The Ferocious” Kelly was determined to make a statement in his next outing. In fact, he shut off his social media accounts just so he could devote himself to training without interruption.
Though extreme, the moved paid off. At ONE: GLOBAL SUPERHEROES in January, he obliterated Cambodian striking specialist Meas Meul.
Kelly ate an inside leg kick, but retaliated with a perfect cross, left hook, and head kick combination, which instantly dropped the Cambodian to the canvas. It took all of 21 seconds, which set new records for the fastest knockout and stoppage victory in the featherweight division.
The whole sequence was clean, and the quickness of it all even surprised Kelly. Nevertheless, his statement was made.
#3 Jeremy Miado Knocks Out A Muay Thai Legend
The Filipino faced heavily-admired local hero Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke on his home turf, which was no easy feat, given the Thai is a former ONE Strawweight World Champion and three-time Lumpinee Stadium world champion with over 280 victories in Muay Thai competition.
Clearly, the odds were not in Miado’s favor. Nevertheless, the Filipino fearlessly traded punches with the Muay Thai legend. He connected with a beautiful left hook-right hook combination, before following up with a wild exchange that ended with a right hook to the chin. That would be the match-ending strike, as a stunned Amnuaysirichoke fell backwards to the canvas.
Miado accomplished the near-impossible. He became the first person to knock out Dejdamrong inside the ONE cage, and did so in 89 seconds, which is the second fastest-knockout victory in strawweight division history.
#4 Shannon Wiratchai’s 21-Second KO
Thai superstar Shannon “OneShin” Wiratchai continuously proves that all he needs is one strike to end anyone’s night.
He displayed that singular striking power against both Richard Corminal and Rajinder Singh Meena in 2017. But last weekend, at ONE: IRON WILL, he expertly reminded the world of that ability in his bout with Rahul “The Kerala Krusher” Raju.
Wiratchai remained traditionally calm as Raju moved forward with a variety of punches, but the Thai wisely leaned back, and countered with right hooks. One of those right hooks caught “The Kerala Krusher” on the jaw, and he went out instantly.
The contest lasted all of 21 seconds, which makes it the second-fastest knockout victory in the lightweight division. It is moments like these which have helped transform Wiratchai into a global martial arts superstar.
#5 Jomary Torres’ Record-Setting Slam
Jomary “The Zamboanginian Fighter” Torres faced the toughest challenge of her career this past January at ONE: GLOBAL SUPERHEROES.
She was paired off against Team Lakay’s April Osenio, a rising talent who had big-match experience against the likes of former ONE Women’s Atomweight World Title challenger Jenny Huang, and current ONE Women’s Strawweight World Champion Xiong Jing Nan.
Though she was considered the underdog, Torres stunned the Mall Of Asia Arena in this all-Filipina battle.
Following a brief scuffle, Osenio locked in a guillotine choke, but Torres battled out, and then proceeded to unload with ground and pound. The Team Lakay combatant then transitioned to an armbar, but “The Zamboanginian Fighter” lifted her high into the air, and slammed her to the mat with authority.
The move knocked out Osenio in 40 seconds, which gave Torres the fastest knockout and stoppage victory in women’s atomweight history at the time – both records have since been eclipsed by Bozhena Antoniyar in Myanmar.
Still undefeated, Torres is proving more and more that maybe she is not the underdog any longer.