ONE Championship bantamweight contender Tial Thang has apologized for his part in his no contest with Sunoto Peringkat at ONE: Bad Blood on Friday.
The two bantamweights faced off on the preliminary card in Singapore with both men looking to claim a decisive win to propel themselves toward a title shot.
But the bout ended abruptly when Thang connected with two knees that were adjudged by referee Olivier Coste to have been below the belt.
The first knee sent Sunoto to the canvas in clear distress and the official gave the Sanford MMA fighter a warning to keep his knee strikes up.
But shortly after the bout was restarted, the two fighters engaged in the clinch once again, and another thumping knee from Thang sent Sunoto down to the mat once again, this time in clear agony.
Referee Coste took his time, assessed the situation and, despite Thang’s protestations, issued him a yellow card.
However, Sunoto was unable to recover within the allotted five-minute injury time limit and the bout was waved off as a result.
With the bout still early in the first round, the matchup was ruled a no contest, leaving Thang both frustrated and angry at how the bout had played out.
Since then, Thang has taken stock of the unfortunate circumstances that unfolded during the bout, and issued a video message to apologize for what happened.
“I’m so sorry to all my fans and I’m so sorry to Sunoto,” he began.
“I thought I landed clean, with the first one or so. But it is what it is (and) I’m ready to do it again, if he wants to do it.
“I hope he’s OK. It’s a sport and I’m sorry if I overreacted a bit. I prepared really hard for this. It was the first time with my family in the camp and I was ready. I was ready to knock him out. But it happens in the sport, so what can I do?”
Thang then went on to say that he is happy to run it back with Sunoto in a quickly-rearranged rematch, should the Indonesian be keen on the bout.
“If he wants to do it again, we can do it tomorrow, I’m here!” he stated.
“If Chatri (Sityodtong) and Rich (Franklin) want me to stay in Singapore, I’m gonna stay in Singapore and take whoever they want me to fight. I’m ready to go!”