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ONE: ‘Empower’ preview

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ONE: “Empower” is set for the Singapore Indoor Stadium on Septemebr 3rd. The all female card is headlined by a strawweight title fight pitting champion Xiong Jing Nan against challenger Michelle Nicolini and features a promotional debut for Seo Hee Ham.

The event was originally set to take place in May but was postponed due to an increase in COVID-19 cases in Singapore. The fight card has remained intact with a couple of new bouts added.

Mei Yamaguchi vs. Julie Mezabarba (Atomweight Grand Prix alternate bout)

Mei Yamaguchi (21-12-1) is primarily a grappler but she cracked Angela Lee with some good overhand rights. Her last win was in 2019, and it was an extremely debatable decision, so it is difficult to gauge whether the 38 year old is still in her prime.

Julie Mezabarba (8-2-1) arrives as an unknown quantity. She has a black belt in kickboxing apparently but the limited fight footage available makes it look like her previous contests have been wild brawls.

Itsuki Hirata vs. Alyse Anderson (Atomweight Grand Prix 1/4 final)

Itsuki Hirata (4-0) has a background in judo and wins all her fights on the mat, either by submission or ground and pound. This promises to be by far the toughest test of her career.

Alyse Anderson (5-1) is an Invicta FC veteran who comes from a karate background but has a win by flying triangle on her record. She is three inches taller than Hirata and might look to utilize her range and make this a striking match.

Ritu Phogat vs. Meng Bo (Atomweight Grand Prix 1/4 final)

It has been a bumpy road for popular Indian Ritu Phogat (5-1). The wrestler was withdrawn from the Grand Prix and then reinstated she seldom struggles to take opponents down but can be too passive when she’s in dominant positions.

Meng Bo (17-5) has showcased some impressive striking but is struggling to average a fight every year so it’s difficult to gauge just how good the experienced Chinese fighter is. She is very patient, too patient sometimes, but has a good right cross which Phogat will want to stay well clear off.

Stamp Fairtex vs. Alyona Rassohyna (Atomweight Grand Prix 1/4 final)

Stamp Fairtex (5-1) has elite level Muay Thai and is dangerous with all eight weapons. Her loss to Alyona Rassohyna in the first fight was bizarre, the Thai tapped for no apparent reason with just seconds remaining in the final round.

Alyona Rassohyna (13-4) is an armbar specialist, it is her go to submission and she’s good at it. She got Stamp in some bad spots during the first fight but the Thai fighter was always able to slip out and escape.

Seo Hee Ham vs. Denice Zamboanga (Atomweight Grand Prix 1/4 final)

Seo Hee Ham (23-8) is riding a six fight winning streak and is the favourite for the tournament. She is a southpaw who is very happy to stay in the pocket and trade and used grounded knees to good effect during her Rizin career.

Denice Zamboanga (8-0) established herself as the #1 contender by beating the likes of Mei Yamaguchi and Jihin Radzuan. She likes to plant her feet and throw hard shots so this could turn out to be a bit of a brawl.

Xiong Jing Nan (c) vs. Michelle Nicolini (For Strawweight title)

Xiong Jing Nan (15-2) has primarily used her boxing up to this point, a boy shot took the life out of Angela Lee. But her takedown defence will need to be on point here as she deals with an opponent who only has one thing in mind.

Michelle Nicolini (6-2) has not fought since 2019 but her style is unlikely to have changed. She is a BJJ black belt who is very good on the ground but has limited striking so it is clear how this fight is likely to play out.

The entire ONE: “Empower” fight card will be available to view free in some territories using the newly launched app which you can download here.

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