SINGAPORE – Philippines has another MMA World Champion.
Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon of Team Lakay is now the new undisputed ONE Bantamweight World Champion after defeating longtime champion Bibiano Fernandes of Brazil via split decision in the main event of ONE: HEART OF THE LION at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, Singapore.
It was a rematch three years in the making after Fernandes submitted the Filipino standout in their first meeting back in January 2016.
The fight was as close as it could be as both fighters tried to maximize their strengths and impose their advantages inside the cage.
In the first round, Fernandes successfully took down Belingon, but the Filipino ended the first round strong with his lethal spinning back kicks.
Fernandes was able to take Belingon down again in the first minute of the second round which was started by an overhand right from the Brazilian, but Belingon managed to get up and end the round strong once again connecting with some vicious ground and pound over Fernandes.
In the third round, both fighters started slow and tried to recover their stamina which was drained in the first two rounds of the match, but the Brazilian still manage to take down Belingon in the final minute of the round but inflicted no damage until the round ended.
The fourth round was a back and forth battle between the two bantamweight superstars, despite being on his back for almost half of the round, Belingon still manages to connect the most damaging blow as a right straight dropped the Brazilian champ.
In the final round, Belingon manages to connect most of his leg kicks and scoring punches to secure the round and the title.
In the end, two judges gave the fight to Belingon while the third judge gave the fight to his Brazilian foe.
Kevin Belingon, newly-crowned undisputed ONE Bantamweight World Champion, stated: “Bibiano [Fernandes] is a very tough opponent, I really had a hard time beating him tonight. I respect him very much, and it is an honor to fight such a tough fighter. I know Bibiano is very tough, but I think I deserve this victory. The game plan was to knock him out. We saw [a weakness] in his previous fight. I kept on giving him everything, but he has good defense.”