Two exciting match-ups kicked off ONE: TOTAL VICTORY in Jakarta, Indonesia, in perfect fashion.
The action produced a pair of highlight reel finishes from emerging young stars, and had the Jakarta Convention Center on Saturday, 16 September, fittingly primed for the rest of the bouts to follow.
Thai Rithy dominates for emphatic stoppage win
The stats suggested this would be youth versus experience, as 19-year-old Cambodian Top Team representative Thai Rithy met Jakarta-based Liberian Jerome Paye, a man 20 years his elder. However, in the cage, there was no disparity to be seen.
Rithy showed just how dangerous his extensive background in Cambodian wrestling and Kun Khmer is despite his young age, dispatching the Synergy MMA Bali product with a furious barrage of punches early in the second round.
The Cambodian featherweight champion looked to make his presence felt straight away, throwing hard kicks from the onset that forced Paye to close the distance.
However, even in close quarters, he was not safe. The Cambodian Top Team youngster eagerly searched for submissions with his back to the fence, and when he had Paye pushed into the cage, unleashed hard knees to the midsection.
Paye managed to take things to the ground late in the first, but the action was ultimately stood up after he was unable to get off any significant offense. It seemed to light a fire under Rithy, who flung hard punches in his direction as the round ended.
Rithy started the second round exactly how he ended the first, and connected with a solid right straight. This set the stage for a relentless flurry that saw strikes repeatedly landing on Paye, eventually leaving him slumped against the fence as the referee stepped in to stop the bout.
Rithy moved to 6-2, maintained his 100 per cent finishing ratio in style, and announced himself to the rest of ONE’s flyweight division with the thrilling knockout.
Riski Umar impresses with first-round TKO
Two exciting Indonesian prospects squared off in the bantamweight division, with both Riski Umar and Adi Nugroho bringing exciting striking styles to the cage.
Ultimately, it was Bali MMA’s Umar who showed his stand-up game to be superior on the night, showing flashes of brilliance throughout an explosive two minutes of action.
Nugroho took the center of the cage first as he tried land a spinning backfist on his Indonesian compatriot, but from there Umar started to take over, and picked up momentum as the bout sped along to its climax.
Umar committed to moving forward with his kicks, while his Jakarta-based foe was tentative and non-committal. It was this that made all the difference, as a pair of hard jumping switch kicks from Umar showed athleticism and accuracy, forcing the Siam Training Camp man to backpedal.
As he decided to opt for a different range of striking in the clinch, Nugroho walked into a hard knee to the midsection from the Bali MMA product, who saw his opponent start to fold and followed up with punches to capture a TKO at 2:00 of the first round.
It was a great star to Umar’s ONE Championship career, and he displayed the makings of a potential star in the process.