Friday, 6 September marks a historic moment for martial arts in Vietnam.
ONE Championship makes its Vietnamese debut with ONE: IMMORTAL TRIUMPH at the Phu Tho Indoor Stadium in Ho Chi Minh City.
A ONE Super Series exclusive showcase, ONE: IMMORTAL TRIUMPH features a league of premier strikers in match-ups across different disciplines.
Nong-O Gaiyanghadao is one of them, and the Thai warrior headlines this incredible card.
Since his induction into ONE Super Series, Nong-O has trailblazed a path for himself through ONE Championship. He defeated some of the organization’s best strikers to win the ONE Bantamweight Muay Thai World Championship.
He will make his second World Title defense against Brice “The Truck” Delval in the main event of the evening.
What’s more, the Thai legend is excited to compete in Vietnam for the first time.
“I’m very happy and honored to be the main event for ONE’s first ever show in Vietnam. I’m extremely proud to be headlining the card,” Nong-O said.
With the rise in popularity of martial arts in the region, he knew it would only be a matter of time before ONE Championship opened its doors in Vietnam.
“ONE is constantly expanding to so many countries, so it’s great that we are tapping into a new audience in Asia,” he stated. “It will be a fun experience fighting in a new country - I’m really looking forward to it.”
The Evolve representative considers himself fortunate to be an ambassador for “the art of eight limbs,” and he realizes his presence in Vietnam could help grow the Thai national sport in another country.
“I’m proud to be one of the first to introduce Vietnamese people to ONE Championship and give them a look at authentic Muay Thai,” Nong-O said.
Nong-O is honored to represent his nation on the global stage of martial arts and believes the future is bright for his fellow compatriots.
“There’s a great representation of Thai fighters, and I’m so proud that Thailand is doing well,” he explained. “I believe there are going to be even more Thai World Champions in the future.”
It is difficult to find a more skilled student of Muay Thai than Nong-O.
The Thai native has a phenomenal arsenal of weapons at his disposal – elbows, knees, and trademark roundhouse kicks that pack a wallop.
Nong-O’s ferocious style of striking thrills fans everywhere, and he has achieved results equal to his growing popularity.
Although many expect him to unleash his deadly roundhouse kicks, the Thai native now prefers to leave his opponents guessing while he adapts to their offense on the fly.
“The strategies and techniques I use differ on the person I’m up against in that specific fight,” he explained. “I try to mix things up from time to time, but more importantly, I’m focused on being well prepared to counter whatever is required in that situation.”
While Nong-O recognizes he has the experience to conquer Delval, he will still prepare to combat some of his rival’s strengths.
“My opponent is tall, and he has good punches, so I’ve been working on combating his strengths and capitalizing on my strengths in my training sessions,” Nong-O said. “I also have a lot more experience, so I’m hoping that component will work to my advantage.”
If Nong-O can score the finish over Delval, it will further bolster his status as the top bantamweight in the sport today.
“I’m very confident for this fight and I’m looking to put on my best performance yet,” he stated. “If there is the opportunity, I hope to finish him by KO.”
Nong-O believes his performances will entertain the fans. But more importantly, he hopes they will appreciate ONE’s mission of sharing the traditional values of martial arts to the world.
“I think that the fans will really enjoy how ONE helps to unveil a story behind each fighter,” Nong-O said. “That really helps to create a connection with the wider audience ONE has from all over the world.”
ONE Championship’s next event, ONE: IMMORTAL TRIUMPH, takes place this Friday, 6 September in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Watch the main card on Toggle at 9:30pm SGT. At 10:00pm SGT, Channel 5 will cut into the live broadcast.
To view the preliminary card, go to ONE’s Facebook and Twitter pages at 6:30pm SGT.
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3 Bouts That Could Steal The Show At ONE: IMMORTAL TRIUMPH