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ONE 159 preview (Pt. 1)

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ONE 159 is set for the Singapore Indoor Stadium on Friday night. The event will be headlined by a middleweight title fight between current champion Reinier de Ridder and former champion Vitaly Bigdash.

With a couple of bouts being scrapped on fight week there are now 11 fights on the card:

Lea Bivins vs. Zeba Bano (Atomweight)

Lea Bivins is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) purple belt who has enjoyed success as an amateur and will be making her pro debut. She has spent time training with the Lee family in Hawaii.

Zeba Bano (6-1) appears to have competed in small fights arranged inside her gym against opponents of limited ability. She was found out on her ONE Championship debut and looks to be completely outmatched here.

Jin Tae Ho vs. Valmir da Silva (Welterweight)

Jin Tae Ho (11-5) comes into this fight on a six fight winning streak and the Korean has never been stopped. He is tall for a welterweight and has lots of lateral movement.

Valmir da Silva (8-2) lasted less than 90 seconds in his ONE Championship debut. But almost all his wins seem to have come by way of KO or TKO which suggests striking is his specialty.

Ariel Sexton vs. Marat Gafurov (Lightweight)

Ariel Sexton (13-4) is an experienced BJJ black belt who signed for ONE Championship in 2014. It has been over three years since his last fight and the 40 year old has had some injury issues so it will be interesting to see what level he performs to,

Marat Gafurov (18-4) is also a BJJ black belt and the former ONE Championship featherweight champion. He is very good with chokes and dangerous with head kicks.

Muay Thai: Sinsamut Klinmee vs. Liam Nolan (Lightweight)

Sinsamut Klinmee scored a stunning KO of Nieky Holzken to immediately establish himself as the No. 1 contender in the division. While not as famous as his brother, Sudsakorn Klinmee, he is very experienced.

Liam Nolan stepped in as a late replacement. But the Englishman showed he has what it takes to compete with the top Thais when he narrowly lost to Bangpleenoi Petchyindee by split decision in 2019.

Danial Williams vs. Zhaxi Zelang (Strawweight)

Danial Williams (5-1) held his own against Rodtang Jitmuangnon in a Muay Thai fight. He is an experienced kickboxer and most of his wins come inside the distance.

Zhaxi Zelang (16-6-1) has a big advantage in terms of MMA experience. This looks like the toughest matchup of the Chinese fighter’s career and it will be interesting to see whether he can make the step up.

The entire ONE 159 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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