Atomweight women make a splash at ONE: Age of Dragons in Beijing

November 16, 2019

Two atomweights made their promotional debuts at ONE: Age of Dragons in Beijing on Saturday. Meng Bo and Ritu Phogat come from very different backgrounds, but both made big impressions at the Cadillac Arena.

Bo’s main claim to fame is having beaten reining UFC bantamweight champion Weili Zhang. The Chinese atomweight was matched with Argentina’s Laura Balin in Beijing and needed less than three minutes to score a highlight reel knockout.

The Chinese fighter landed a right hook midway through the opening round that folded the former atomweight title challenger. Balin was immediately separated from her senses and the flurry of follow up punches felt somewhat superfluous.

The referee quickly stepped in to save the Argentinian from sustaining additional punishment. With the win Bo improves to 14-5, while Balin drops to 11-6 and the Chinese fighter can consider herself to be among the contenders in ONE Championship’s increasingly competitive atomweight division.

Meanwhile, Ritu Phogat announced herself to the MMA world with an impressive showing in her debut. The Indian’s career is guaranteed to come under close scrutiny because she was a wrestling star in her homeland and a blockbuster Bollywood movie was made about her and her sisters.

She used her wrestling to dominate fellow debutant Nam Hee Kim. After taking down the Korean midway through the opening round, Phogat landed in side control and rained down hammerfists on the defenseless Korean until the referee had no option but to call off the action.

Phogat moves up to 1-0 and there are no shortage of potential opponents in the atomweight division. The likes of Ayaka Miura, Mei Yamaguchi and Itsuki Hirata are all in line for a shot at reigning champion Angela Lee and Bo can also consider herself to be in the mix after Saturday’s win.

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ONE: Age of Dragons official results

  • ONE Flyweight Kickboxing World Championship: Ilias Ennahachi defeats Wang Wenfeng by Split Decision (SD) after 5 rounds
  • ONE Light Heavyweight Kickboxing World Championship: Roman Kryklia defeats Tarik Khbabez by Technical Knockout (TKO) at 0:43 minutes of round 2
  • Muay Thai Catchweight (73.0kg): Jamal Yusupov defeats Yodsanklai IWE Fairtex by Knockout (KO) at 0:39 minutes of round 2
  • Mixed Martial Arts Atomweight: Meng Bo defeats Laura Balin by Knockout (KO) at 2:18 minutes of round 1
  • Mixed Martial Arts Atomweight: Ritu Phogat defeats Nam Hee Kim by TKO (Strikes) at 3:37 minutes of round 1
  • Mixed Martial Arts Strawweight: Jeremy Miado defeats Miao Li Tao by Knockout (KO) at 3:01 minutes of round 1
  • Kickboxing Featherweight: Christina Breuer defeats Jorina Baars by Split Decision (SD) after 3 rounds
  • Mixed Martial Arts Featherweight: Tang Kai defeats Edward Kelly by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds
  • Mixed Martial Arts Bantamweight: Yusup Saadulaev defeats Daichi Takenaka by Split Decision (SD) after 3 rounds
  • Kickboxing Catchweight (73.0kg): Enriko Kehl defeats Armen Petrosyan by Technical Knockout (TKO) at 1:55 minutes of round 2
  • Mixed Martial Arts Strawweight:Hexigetu defeats Ramon Gonzales by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds