Eddie Ng is a Hong Kong national, but has never fought on Chinese territory, having spent his entire career to date competing in either Singapore or England. That will all change in September with the South China Morning Post reporting that the 28 year old will be on ONE FC's first ever card in Beijing.
It promises to be a personal milestone for Ng, who was brought up in the North of England, but has been at the epicenter of the explosive recent growth of Asian MMA.
"I was part of the inaugural ONE FC event in Singapore back in 2011 and going down in the books as been part of the very first ONE FC held in China would be a huge honor for me. Martial arts has been part of Chinese culture for so many years and it is an exciting time right now to see the new crop of Chinese MMA fighters begin to emerge," he said.
Although the South China Morning Post reported that Ng was already penciled in for ONE FC's first ever event in mainland China, there must be a question mark over his fitness as the 28 year old fought last month with a broken arm.
Ng says he is cautiously optimistic that he will be ready to play a role in ONE FC's expansion into the Chinese capital, but he won't set foot in the cage again until he is completely healthy.
"September time is when I am targeting a return, but I will not rush it. Everything that I do right now with training, treatment and rehab is to facilitate that goal but realistically only time will tell. I do feel good for a September return though," he said.
Not rushing a return after injury is a lesson which Ng has learned the hard way after going into his ONE FC: "Honor & Glory" bout against Vincent Latoel with the aforementioned broken wrist. That TKO loss broke a five-fight winning streak as the Hong Kong national paid a heavy price for refusing to withdraw.
"There was a break and a tear in a ligament, it was painful to strike and even more so to wrestle or grapple. However, in no way shape or form would I use an injury as an excuse for the outcome. I make my own decisions in this world whether they are good or bad and martial arts has taught me to find the good in every situation. I learn from the bad decisions so that they will not be repeated again in the future."
Four weeks on from that loss, which was the first ever blemish in Ng's ONE FC record and saw him drop to 7-2 overall, he says he is still unable to train properly due to the damaged arm.
"I am still injured and there are certain things that I cannot physically do, however I am still training. I believe that there is always some form of training that you can do, be it physical or mental. Luckily, I have the best team mates and coaches in the world at Evolve MMA and they allow me to train around my injuries," he said.
Ng's five ONE FC fights to date have all taken place in his adopted home of Singapore, but with Beijing on the horizon and Hong Kong set to play host to a 2015 show, a high percentage of his future fights are likely to take place on Chinese territory which is something he is looking forwards to.
"It is very exciting to see ONE FC move into China! ONE FC in China. The growth of ONE FC has been truly staggering, not just me but all fighters now have the potential to fight more often," he said.
Ng has yet to fight more than two times in one year which has partly been due to the terrible luck he has had with injuries, with the broken arm coming just a couple of months after he was forced to pull out of a proposed bout with Kamal Shalorus due to a shoulder problem.
It's been frustrating for the growing number of fans the softly spoken lightweight has accumulated since moving to Asia, but he says he is still happy to be playing such an integral role in ONE FC's growth and wouldn't want to be doing any other job.
"I'm signed to the biggest organization in Asia, ONE FC and I''m working with the best trainers and training partners in the world at Evolve MMA. I can't wait to compete in Beijing for the first time, fighting and getting to travel to different places around the world is a perfect combination!"