At ONE: IMMORTAL TRIUMPH, Nong-O Gaiyanghadao faced the toughest challenger in his ONE Super Series career.
Last Friday, 6 September, Brice “The Truck” Delval drove the ONE Bantamweight Muay Thai World Champion to the end of the road in their five-round clash inside the Phu Tho Indoor Stadium in Vietnam.
The 32-year-old Thai might have earned the nod to clinch a split-decision win, but in the aftermath, he admitted that a victory seemed uncertain.
“He was bigger and very strong. It was a really challenging fight for me, and I found it to be very exhausting too,” Nong-O said. “I have so much respect for my opponent and was honored to share the ring with him.”
The 20-year-old Algerian did not hesitate against the more experienced Thai legend.
Delval exploited his 7-centimeter height advantage in his toe-to-toe exchanges with the World Champion. At one point, the S1 Muay Thai World Champion executed a push kick that sent Nong-O backward and down to the canvas.
Although things were not going exactly as planned, the Evolve representative fell back on his training.
“Every time I fight, I always prepare myself mentally for the fact that my opponents will be incredibly strong and capable, so I am always ready to handle situations like these,” he explained.
Up against adversity, the Thai bantamweight seized the opportunity to remind everyone why he has no equal.
Nong-O refused to let Delval bait him and cleverly found holes in the defense of the young Algerian phenom.
Despite not getting the finish he wanted, Nong-O knew he put his best effort in for fans in Vietnam. The Singapore-based sensation showed visible relief as the announcer read the scores.
“Every time I win, it is always an incredibly happy moment for me,” he said. “I am proud to come out on top and that everyone watching gets to see me overcome a very large and difficult opponent.”
The Thai hero does not wish to rest on his laurels and believes he can be better in his next contest. He has laid out the welcome mat for future challengers.
“I am proud of myself for being able to perform to the best of my abilities for the fans, and those who are supporting me and helping me to achieve this – it feels good to make them happy,” Nong-O stated. “However, for my next fight, I will definitely need to train even harder.”
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But The Home Of Martial Arts breaks new ground as it features 28 World Champions, four World Title bouts, three World Grand Prix Championship Finals, and four World Champion versus World Champion matches.
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