Tawanchai PK.Saenchai Knocks Out Niclas Larsen to Earn World Title Shot

3 June 2022 – Singapore: ONE Championship™ (ONE) rocked the Singapore Indoor Stadium with a thrilling night of martial arts action at ONE 158: Tawanchai vs. Larsen. The exciting 13-bout card featured an official ONE Featherweight Muay Thai World Title eliminator and a pivotal bantamweight mixed martial arts contest.

[ONE 158: Tawanchai vs. Larsen Photo Gallery]

In the main event, #5-ranked featherweight Muay Thai contender Tawanchai PK.Saenchai dominated promotional newcomer Niclas Larsen, knocking out the Danish fighter in the second round.

The Thai phenom was precise and powerful with his attacks, taking the fight to Larsen early. “Dreamchaser” couldn’t match Tawanchai’s intensity, as the PK.Saenchai Muaythaigym representative scored a quick knockdown with a furious combination in the first round.

Larsen recovered and made it to the second frame, but he was met with even more adversity. Tawanchai connected with a straight left hand down the middle to score another knockdown, and the Danish debutant could not beat the count. With the victory, Tawanchai earned a shot at reigning ONE Featherweight Muay Thai World Champion Petchmorakot Petchyindee, as well as a US$50,000 performance bonus.

In a battle of elite bantamweight contenders, #4-ranked Fabricio Andrade scored a quick first-round finish over #2-ranked Kwon Won Il. “Wonder Boy” stalked “Pretty Boy” around the Circle from the opening bell, looking to land the fight-ending blow. That came in the form of a left body kick that crumpled the South Korean, who could not recover from the impact. Andrade’s performance established him as a World Title threat and earned him a US$50,000 performance bonus.

Fifth-ranked flyweight contender Reece McLaren authored a slick submission victory over dangerous knockout artist Xie Wei. After getting dropped by a thunderous right hand from the Chinese fighter, “Lightning” recovered and turned to his world-class grappling. Within moments, McLaren had Xie’s back and secured a rear-naked choke to force the tap.

Former ONE Flyweight World Champion and current #2-ranked contender Kairat Akhmetov routed highly regarded Japanese veteran Tatsumitsu Wada in an impressive performance. Akhmetov’s wrestling and striking were on point, as Wada could not gain any momentum. After shutting down “The Sweeper” across three rounds, “The Kazakh” took home a unanimous decision and called for a World Title shot.

Veteran martial artist Guto Inocente survived an early onslaught from Serbian sensation Rade Opacic to produce a come-from-behind knockout victory in the first round. Opacic hounded Inocente across the Circle after hurting him with punches, but the Brazilian connected flush with a left hand to the body that ended the fight abruptly and snapped Opacic’s four-fight winning streak.

Former ONE Strawweight World Champion and current #5-ranked contender Alex Silva put together a tremendous performance against Adrian Mattheis, finishing the rising Indonesian star with a crafty submission in their highly anticipated rematch. Mattheis could not get past the Brazilian’s chain grappling, and he ultimately succumbed to an inside heel hook in the first round. The victory also earned Silva a US$50,000 bonus.

[READ: ONE 158 Lead Card: Buchecha, Delaney Stay Unbeaten In MMA With Dominant Finishes]

Performance bonus winners: Tawanchai PK.Saenchai, Fabricio Andrade, Alex Silva

Muay Thai – Featherweight: Tawanchai PK.Saenchai def. Niclas Larsen via Knockout at 1:42 of R2
MMA – Bantamweight: Fabricio Andrade def. Kwon Won Il via Knockout at 1:02 of R1
MMA – Flyweight: Reece McLaren def. Xie Wei via submission (Rear-naked Choke) at 3:42 of R1
MMA – Flyweight: Kairat Akhmetov def. Tatsumitsu Wada via Unanimous Decision
Kickboxing – Heavyweight: Guto Inocente def. Rade Opacic via Knockout at 2:33 of R1
MMA – Strawweight: Alex Silva def. Adrian Mattheis via Submission (Inside Heel Hook) at 3:34 of R1

MMA – Flyweight: Gurdarshan Mangat def. Yodkaikaew Fairtex via Split Decision
Kickboxing – Lightweight: Constantin Rusu def. Marouan Toutouh via Unanimous Decision
MMA – Heavyweight: Marcus Almeida def. Simon Carson via TKO at 2:24 of R1
MMA – Heavyweight: Odie Delaney def. Mehdi Barghi via Submission (Straight Arm Lock) at 2:22 of R2
MMA – Heavyweight: Jasur Mirzamukhamedov def. Duke Didier via Split Decision
MMA – Atomweight: Jenelyn Olsim def. Julie Mezabarba via Split Decision
MMA – Lightweight: Edson Marques def. Kim Kyung Lock via Unanimous Decision

Author: Robert Belen

Robert Belen is a long-time combat sports writer for dSource Boxing. An avid sports fan, he knows no fear nor partiality in his reporting. If you have a problem with him, tell it to his face. (We bid you not.) You can follow him on Twitter @robertbelen

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