ONE Championship return to Kuala Lumpur on August 18 for what they describe as “another blockbuster evening of authentic martial arts action”. The event, ONE: Quest for Greatness, will take place at the iconic Stadium Negara and will be headlined by undefeated ONE world featherweight champion Marat ‘Cobra’ Gafurov of Russia in a fight against top contender Martin ‘The Situ-Asian’ Nguyen of Australia.
Chatri Sityodtong, Chairman and CEO of ONE Championship, said: “It is always an exciting time in Kuala Lumpur whenever our world-class athletes climb atop Asia’s biggest and grandest martial arts stage. Our warriors are eager to put on a show for fans in Kuala Lumpur, and it is our honor to have them perform in this marvelous city.
“Marat Gafurov and Martin Nguyen are two of the promotion’s finest featherweights. They have met before, with Gafurov taking victory via submission. This time, however, a better-prepared and refocused Nguyen vows to finally bring the title back to Sydney.”
Marat Gafurov of Dagestan, Russia, is the reigning ONE featherweight world champion. Undefeated in 15 fights, Gafurov is a high-level grappler with 11 of his wins coming by submission. Rarely challenged and always dominant, Gafurov captured the featherweight title in 2015 with a gutsy victory over former champion Narantungalag Jadambaa. In his last bout, Gafurov defeated Jadambaa once again to cement his claim as the undisputed ONE featherweight world champion.
His next challenger, Australia’s Martin Nguyen, is a former featherweight title challenger with a 8-1 professional record. The 28-year-old’s only loss came at the hands of Gafurov, when he stepped up to accept their first showdown on just a few days’ notice.
Nguyen has yet to win a fight by decision; there are five solid knockout wins, as well as three victories by submission, to his name. Last time out, Nguyen defeated Japanese veteran Kazunori Yokota via first-round knockout and he now goes into this rematch with Gafurov hoping to settle the score and come away with the ONE featherweight world championship.