She may have had to wait four additional months to get the chance, but Seo Hee Ham finally settled her ONE Championship rivalry with Itsuki Hirata.
The South Korean veteran was due to face rising Japanese star Hirata last November at ONE 163, but Hirata failed her weight and hydration tests and the bout was postponed.
The matchup finally took place on Saturday, March 25 in Singapore, as the two women’s atomweight contenders went head to head at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
As expected, Hirata immediately looked to close the distance and take the fight to the mat, but Ham did an outstanding job of keeping the fight on the feet for large spells of the matchup as she punished her younger rival with a constant stream of strikes.
The 36-year-old repeatedly connected with kicks and solid left hands as she established her superiority on the feet. And, even though Hirata was able to secure a couple of takedowns during the matchup, she was unable to make them count, and Ham fought her way back to her feet.
After the three rounds were complete, the judges delivered a unanimous decision, with Ham picking up the victory to improve her career record to 26-8.
And, with two wins over fellow atomweight contender Denice Zamboanga already on her record, it might not be long before Ham gets her shot at the ONE atomweight title currently held by Angela Lee.
The night was headlined by a pair of all-striking matchups, as defending flyweight kickboxing world champion Superlek Kiatmoo9 and women’s atomweight Muay Thai world champion Allycia Hellen Rodrigues both retained their titles in the two featured bouts of the night.
Superlek scored a third-round knockout of late replacement challenger Danial Williams in the main event, while Rodrigues outpointed ONE atomweight kickboxing champ Janet Todd to ensure she held on to her Muay Thai title.
ONE Fight Night 8: Official results
- Superlek Kiatmoo9 def. Danial Williams via knockout (punches) – Round 3, 1:55 – for flyweight kickboxing title
- Allycia Hellen Rodrigues def. Janet Todd via unanimous decision – for atomweight Muay Thai title
- Seo Hee Ham def. Itsuki Hirata via unanimous decision
- Akbar Abdullaev def. Oh Ho Taek via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 0:44
- Zhang Peimian def. Torepchi Dongak via unanimous decision – kickboxing bout
- Aslanbek Zikreev def. Rui Botelho via split decision – Muay Thai bout
- Keito Yamakita def. Alex Silva via unanimous decision
- Eddie Abasolo def. Niclas Larsen via knockout (punch) – Round 2, 2:14 – Muay Thai bout
- Iman Barlow ddef. Ekaterina Vandaryeva via unanimous decision – Muay Thai bout
- Tammi Musumeci def. Bianca Basilio via unanimous decision – submission grappling bout