Unbeaten Boutasaa faces Thai star Sitthichai in KL
published : 13 Oct 2022 at 04:00
newspaper section: Sports
There is an interesting addition to the ONE 162: Zhang v Di Bella fight on Oct 21 at the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur.
On the main card, fourth-ranked featherweight kickboxing contender Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong takes on Dutch-Moroccan rising star Mohammed Boutasaa in what will be the latter's biggest fight of his life.
Thailand's Sitthichai is a kickboxing legend, who holds a record of 126-33-5 in the striking art.
However, Boutasaa has yet to be defeated in his 15-0 career and did exceptionally well against Davit Kiria in his debut at ONE 157.
Boutasaa will now try to crack the featherweight kickboxing rankings with a win over Sitthichai, the favourite.
In the main event, Chinese striking prodigy Zhang Peimian will get the biggest opportunity of his career when he steps into the circle against debutant Jonathan Di Bella for the vacant ONE strawweight kickboxing world championship.
The 18-year-old is 2-0 in ONE, having scored a second-round knockout of Joshua "Timebomb" Tonna in March and a unanimous decision win against Aslanbek Zikreev in July.
Di Bella currently holds an undefeated record of 10-0 in kickboxing, as well as a 2-0 slate in boxing. He is also well-known for his fast hands and ability to manoeuvre well on the canvas.
In the co-main event, Nieky Holzken will be up against Islam Murtazaev in a match-up that promises action and excitement.
"The Natural" tasted his first defeat in three years when he lost to Sinsamut Klinmee in March.
Murtazaev also lost his debut against ONE lightweight kickboxing world champion Regian Eersel in December. This bout will be the catalyst that thrusts either man get back into the win column.
Aussie favourite and fifth-ranked contender Reece McLaren also makes his return after a spectacular submission of Xie Wei at ONE 158.
"Lightning" faces Windson Ramos, a quick flyweight, who is riding a five-fight winning streak.
Rounding out the main card are Alex Silva and Gustavo Balart, who will square off in a strawweight MMA bout, and Jimmy Vienot and Niclas Larsen, who will battle in a featherweight Muay Thai fight.
- Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong