ONE Championship returned to action Friday in Kallang, Singapore with ONE: Full Circle — and double champ Reinier de Ridder wasted little time defending his middleweight title.
Headlining the twelve-fight card against Kyrgyzstan’s Kiamrian Abbasov, “The Dutch Knight” de Ridder didn’t need five rounds to get the job done. He barely needed three.
Immediately taking the fight into his wheelhouse off the opening bell, de Ridder had the fight to the ground inside of ten seconds. Abbasov was flat on his back, dry, and well away from the fence, with de Ridder settling into side control and making it look easy. The champ stayed loose on top, looking to step over into an arm-bar, and hunting other submission opportunities, while mixing in a bit of ground n’ pound.
Come the final minute of the opening round, Abbasov was bloodied, and de Ridder was sitting in full mount. As time wound down, Abbasov would escape to the top, then to his feet, avoiding an upkick and at least finishing the open frame standing.
The opening seconds of round two saw de Ridder again get the fight to the mat. This time, a trip in the clinch had the champ landing in full mount once again. After spending a solid four minutes on his back in round one, it was not where Kiamrian Abbasov wanted to be. The drama in round two would come late, with de Ridder locking in an arm-triangle choke in the dying seconds. Abbasov looked uncomfortable — and tapped. The tap, however, came after the bell, and the fight moved to the third.
It was over before much longer however. A single-leg takedown 45 seconds in saw de Ridder landing in full mount, and moving again to the arm-triangle choke. This time, Abbasov had no hope of being saved by the bell, and the tap came just under a minute in.
For de Ridder, who also holds light heavyweight gold in ONE Championship, the win marks his first defense of either title. It also pocketed him an extra $50,000, as he was awarded a performance bonus following the event.
With Vitaly Bigdash winning his rubber match against Aung La N Sang earlier on the card, de Ridder may also have a future showdown with the ex-champ lined up.
Official Result: Reinier de Ridder (c) def. Kiamrian Abbasov via Submission (arm-triangle choke), Round 3, 0:57