After the dust settled, two of four championship belts up for grabs changed hands at One ‘Inside the Matrix’ on Friday.
In the main event, Aung La N Sang (26-11) put his One middleweight title on the line against Reinier de Ridder. It took less than a round to "The Dutch Knight" to tame "The Burmese Python" and inflict Aung La his first loss in three years. The defending champion started the bout by landing an uppercut, to which De Ridder answered with a takedown. Once on the canvas, the unbeaten Dutchman took his opponent’s back in no time. Aung La attempted to get out of the sticky situation, even by grabbing the fence, but there was nothing he could do. At the 3:26 mark, Aung La was forced to tap after De Ridder’s neck crank slid under the chin into a rear-naked choke. In the process, De Ridder became the first Dutch champion in One history.
Christian Lee finishes undefeated phenom Iuri Lapicus with DEVASTATING ground and pound to retain the ONE Lightweight World Title! @ChristianLeeMMA #InsideTheMatrix #WeAreONE #ONEChampionship— ONE Championship (@ONEChampionship) October 30, 2020
How to watch ONE: INSIDE THE MATRIX https://t.co/xoYhoMn3qk pic.twitter.com/Zn2McmWPwg
The co-headliner pit two of the brighter prospects in the Singapore-based promotion as Christian Lee (14-3) locked horns with Iuri Lapicus (14-1) for the One lightweight strap. In short order, Lapicus caught the champion with a vicious hook, dropping Lee to the canvas with his very first strike. After a wild scramble, Lee bounced back to the feet only to take his opponent down. Although briefly mounted, Lapicus escaped and set up a leg lock to reverse his position. Lee managed to get back on top, and Lee let loose with heavy ground-and-pound. One strike in the final barrage seemed to shut Lapicus’ lights out, as the referee stepped in to halt the contest at the 2:19 of the opening frame.
In a title clash in One's featherweight division, Thanh Le (12-2) overcame champ Martin Nguyen (13-4) at the end of a magnificent performance. Le displayed some footwork finesse that threw off the defending champion in the first few rounds. In the third stanza, "The Situ-Asian" felt the urgency to come out strong and landed a few shots that shook up Le. After recovering from the blows, Le answered with some combinations of his own. One of them rattled Nguyen’s cage, and Le chased him down to finish the job with a few follow-up punches. The referee called the end of the action at the 2:19 mark – the same time as the Lee-Lapicus fight.
In the first title fight on the card, Jingnan Xiong (15-2) defended her strawweight crown against a surging Tiffany Teo (9-2). Xiong put on a dominant performance thanks to her surgical striking that marked up Teo's face. The challenger rallied in the fifth round, but it was not enough to win the contest. Eventually, all three judges rewarded Xiong with a unanimous decision victory.
Elsewhere, Antonio Caruso (8-1) outpointed Eduard Folayang (22-10) to win a unanimous decision, and Ritu Phogat (3-0) dispatched Nou Srey Pov (1-2) via TKO at 2:02 of Round 2.