ONE Championship Founder/Chairman/CEO Chatri Sityodtong yesterday unveiled that Singapore will witness the biggest and the most stacked MMA card ever in the company’s history – ONE: Unstoppable Dreams on 18th May. The card will feature the much-anticipated title rematch fight between the reigning ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion Angela “Unstoppable” Lee of Singapore and world title challenger Mei “V.V” Yamaguchi of Tokyo, Japan. Talking about the event, Chatri said ‘’ONE: UNSTOPPABLE DREAMS is poised to become the biggest night of martial arts in Singapore’s history’’.
Angela Lee and Mei Yamaguchi were also present during the conference call and answered questions about their title fight which was scheduled to happen last year. But due to an accident where Lee was involved, the fight got shelved. Now fully recovered and ready to go – Angela Lee looks to defend it against the tough and formidable opponent from Japan – Mei Yamaguchi. This is a rematch between these two atomweights who fought earlier for the inaugural ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion in May 2016.
Angela Lee, ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion, stated: “With the help and support of my family, we got through (the accident) together. And I feel thankful for everything. I am so excited to be back in action. I’ve missed everything that comes along with competition — the training and preparation, and of course, getting right back in the cage. I think fans are going to see a great matchup. I just want to go in there, do what I love, and the results will show.”
Mei Yamaguchi, ONE World Title Challenger, stated: “I am super focused on this match. It’s going to be a tough challenge for me, facing the champion. But I am confident in my abilities and I working hard to give my best performance. I’ve been training a lot, especially in jiu-jitsu. I’m now a black belt, so I think I’m improving a lot. At the same time, I have a new kickboxing coach, so we’re working very hard. I hope I can showcase some of those new skills.”
We also asked Chatri about his plans to launch ONE in India and he was confident that 2019 will be the year when the first televised event will be held in India. The seeds for this future road map were sown last year when Chatri visited India and met our honorable PM Mr. Narendra Modi where he discussed the launch of MMA on a grand scale. Chatri was also in Hyderabad the same time to attend the Global Entrepreneurship Summit where he talked about the business of winning at sports entrepreneurship.
Another milestone and an important addition to the ONE Championship’s leadership team is that of Saurabh Mittal – the billionaire entrepreneur who joined as vice chairman. Mittal also was a co-founder of Indiabulls, India’s leading financial services and real estate conglomerate. His Indian roots, network, influence and background will add immense boost to the future events in India. Chatri also said they are in talks with the local Indian broadcasters and the deal should be finalized by the end of 2018.
Though its still more than a year ahead, the announcement has come at the right time as India is seeing the growth and maturity of mixed martial arts as a sport. Indian MMA teams and fighters get a new ray of hope with ONE’s entry into the new market and get a platform to showcase their skillset. Chatri added ‘there will be a lot of Indian MMA fighters on the cards and we will leave no stone unturned to make our mark in this land rich of martial arts history.