As expected, the women of ONE: EMPOWER delivered from opening bout to main event, but the highlights of the evening had to be Ritu “The Indian Tigress” Phogat defeating a veteran opponent and “The Panda” Xiong Jing Nan defending her ONE Women’s Strawweight World Championship against a 13-time BJJ World Champion.
“The Indian Tigress” overcame an early struggle against highly touted #2-ranked atomweight Meng Bo in the quarterfinals of the ONE Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix on Friday, 3 September.
In the opening round, Phogat was nearly knocked out and submitted, but she showed incredible heart and persevered against the Chinese star, taking control of the bout in round two and not letting go of the wheel from there.
She dominated Meng on the canvas, using her wrestling pedigree and ground-and-pound to smother her rival, who found herself trapped underneath the growing confidence of Phogat.
By the end of three rounds, it was clear that Phogat earned the win, and the judges’ unanimous decision was a mere formality. With that, Phogat advanced to the tournament semifinals.
In the main event, Xiong outworked #2-ranked strawweight Michelle Nicolini to defend her ONE Women’s Strawweight World Title for the fifth time.
“The Panda” pumped her punches into the face of the Brazilian for nearly 25 minutes, while Nicolini unsuccessfully attempted takedown after takedown.
Flustered, Nicolini had no answer to Xiong’s boxing skills, and the Chinese superstar used her punches to score the unanimous decision win.
Full Results For ONE: EMPOWER
Xiong Jing Nan defeats Michelle Nicolini via unanimous decision to retain the ONE Women’s Strawweight World Title
Seo Hee Ham defeats Denice Zamboanga via split decision (Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix quarterfinal)
Stamp Fairtex defeats Alyona Rassohyna via split decision (Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix quarterfinal)
Ritu Phogat defeats Meng Bo via unanimous decision (Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix quarterfinal)
Itsuki Hirata defeats Alyse Anderson via unanimous decision (Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix quarterfinal)
Anissa Meksen defeats Cristina Morales via TKO at 2:27 of round two (kickboxing – atomweight)
Jackie Buntan defeats Daniela Lopez via unanimous decision (Muay Thai – strawweight)
Julie Mezabarba defeats Mei Yamaguchi via unanimous decision (Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix quarterfinal alternate)
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