ONE FC 22 recap and photos: Svirid new Middleweight Champ, Ando impresses, Sapo stuns

ONE FC Middleweight Champion Igor Svirid, by David Ash,
ONE FC Middleweight Champion Igor Svirid, by David Ash,


ONE FC 22 took place on November 7, 2014 in Singapore.  “Battle of Lions” concluded with some spectacular wins and some devastating losses. The show saw a capacity crowd of international fans who turned up to support the fighters from their respective home countries like Pakistan and Malaysia.


The preliminary card was kicked off by debuting atomweight women, Singapore’s own Kirstie Gannaway and Malaysian Adek Omar. Gannaway used her seamless boxing to set up the takedown which allowed her to quickly finish with a submission. Gannaway said of her stellar performance,

“I feel great that it went so much better than expected. I want to keep training, and stay strong. I want to continue to work on my boxing and wrestling even more. I will keep pushing myself. My confidence helped me win this. Part of my success was that I was dealing with my nerves quite well and the whole team was behind me.”

Indonesian Zuli Silawanto and Taiwanese  Jeff Huang were the second fight of the night, and once again a quick finish prevailed. Huang submitted Silawanto via rear naked choke in the first round which prompted the Indonesian to announce his retirement from MMA.

Next up were Pakistan’s Waqar Umar and Singapore’s Amir Khan. Khan clearly possessed stronger striking capabilities than Umar, and he scored a huge win with a knock out in just 25 seconds. Umar’s coach Bashir Ahmad commented after the fight,

“We will keep working hard with Waqar. It was obvious that in terms of the level of fight quality we are not as advanced as Singapore in terms of MMA. But our top guys are not too far behind and we know that we will improve as we bide our time, and keep training hard.”


ONE FC 22 Martin Nguyen chokes out Rocky Batolbatol, by David Ash,
ONE FC 22 Martin Nguyen chokes out Rocky Batolbatol, by David Ash,


The main card launched with Filipino Rocky Batolbatol and Australian Martin Nguyen testing each other’s chins throughout the first round.  Batolbatol’s counters were coming out strong in the second, but Nguyen’s takedowns won the day. Once on the canvas, Nguyen garnered a rear naked choke for the victory.

Major Overall reprised his famous soccer kick against Filipino Cary Bullos, which he followed up quickly with a rear naked choke, all within the lightning speed of 29 seconds. Overall said after his fight,

“I feel I am finally starting to come to a peak in my career. My game plan was to take Cary down but as soon as Cary threw that first kick I wanted to kick him back – and I did! I am ecstatic. This win is as much for me as it is for my fans, my friends and my team at Juggernaut Fight Club. It’s back to training for all of us tomorrow. We never stop training.”

Dwayne Hinds from Trinidad and Tobago fought next, against Belgian Christophe Vandijck.  A high energy, fast-paced start saw Hinds throwing heavy blows, but it was Vandijck’s relentless judo attacks that made a huge difference.  On the ground, Vandijck rained down the blows until Hinds tapped to the strikes.

Japan’s Tatsuya Mizuno and Frenchman Brayan Rafiq put up a lackluster exchange of kicks, knees and punches, with Mizuno looking for a kimura every time Rafiq tried for  a throw.  Rafiq’s low hands in the third invited Mizuno to be more aggressive, and the judges saw fit to award the Japanese the win.

Brazilian warhorse Luis Santos proved that his fight experience was a critical component against Azerbaijan’s Bakhtiyar Abbasov.  Santos delivered a knee to Abbasov’s rib which sent him crumpling to the ground in pain in under a minute.  The blistering finish should put him into title contention.


ONE FC 22 Koji Ando TKOs Zorobabel Moreira, by David Ash,
ONE FC 22 Koji Ando TKOs Zorobabel Moreira, by David Ash,


In the co-main event, Japan’s Koji Ando and Brazil’s Zorobabel Moreira put up a remarkable and technical bout.  Ando constantly maintained attacks of jabs and punches, while Moreira threw his walloping kicks and kept Ando at bay with his long jab.  In the third, Moreira’s cardio began to fail him, and Ando took advantage of it with a tight offense.  He racked up another finish with a left straight and a deadly right uppercut.  Ando said confidently yet with a humble demeanor,

“I believe I would like to challenge the champion, and when I leave the cage, I would like to have the belt.”

The Middleweight Championship bout main event was between Kazahkstan’s Igor Svirid and Brazilian Leandro Ataides, clearly the crowd favorite with his considerable reputation as a coach while living and training in Singapore.  However, Svirid had them gasping in shock when, with a backing up counter right to the chin and a follow up barrage of punches ended with a right to the temple, crumpling Ataides to the canvas in just 17 seconds.  After this headlining bout, Svirid commented,

“I trained very hard, but the quick punches was key to my technique ,and it was all good technique that gave me the win. When I saw Ataides falling, I knew I had the win. I came here to do my best and I did it. ”

Ataides, when queried about how he felt about his performance, replied,

“It is a fight. Some will win and some will lose. The fight ended very quickly but I will never stop, I will train ten times harder. To all my fans, I am sorry for losing the fight but I will be back stronger.”

Photography by David Ash,

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November 7, 2014

Official results:

Middleweight Championship bout:
Igor Svirid defeats Leandro Ataides by Knockout at 0:17 minutes of round 1

Lightweight bout:
Koji Ando defeats Zorobabel Moreira by TKO (Strikes) at 4:21 minutes of round 3

Welterweight bout:
Luis Santos defeats Bakhtiyar Abbasov by Submission (Strikes) at 0:53 minutes of round 1

Middleweight bout:
Tatsuya Mizuno defeats Brayan Rafiq by Unanimous Decision

Welterweight bout:
Christophe Vandijck defeats Dwayne Hinds by TKO (Strikes) at 2:40 minutes of round 1

Featherweight bout:
Major Overall defeats Cary Bullos by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 0:29 minutes of round 1

Featherweight bout:
Martin Nguyen defeats Rocky Batolbatol by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 2:10 minutes of round 2

Featherweight bout:
Amir Khan defeats Waqar Umar by Knockout at 1:25 minutes of round 1

Welterweight bout:
Jeff Huang defeats Zuli Silawanto by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 3:10 minutes of round 1

Women’s Atomweight bout:
Kirstie Gannaway defeats Adek Omar by Submission (Triangle Choke) at 2:34 minutes of round 1