Martial Combat 3 returns with a bang at Resorts World Sentosa

Jong Man Kim takes a hit from Aaron Steele at Martial Combat 3 in Singapore.

Jong of South Korea overpowers Steele of USA on first night of Resorts World Sentosa Martial Combat

SINGAPORE, 16 June 2010 – The third installment of Asia’s biggest Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) Championship was highlighted by a dramatic late victory for veteran Korean fighter Jong Man Kim in his featherweight title superfight against American Aaron Steele.

Witnessed by an enthusiastic crowd at Resorts World Sentosa, Jong used all his experience to reserve some energy for a final flourish with his opponent visibly tiring. The judges were all set to render their decisions after a five-round stalemate when the Korean sent his opponent crashing to the canvass with barely a minute to go in the fight. Perhaps fearing he was behind on the scorecards, Jong moved in for the kill and unleashed a barrage of blows on the stunned American.

With a Martial Combat Superfight belt on the line, the referee gave Steele every chance to recover, but with less than 30 seconds remaining he had seen enough and stepped in to stop the fight and save him from further punishment.

Said an elated and exhausted Jong: “I was extremely tired. I didn’t expect it to go to five rounds and thought I could win the bout in the first. But the Americans are known for their stamina and power. Going into the fifth round, I knew I was behind on points and when I saw an opening I knew I had to take advantage. I am very happy and it was an honour to fight for Martial Combat and I am pleased to take the belt back to Korea.”

Held at the Compass Ballroom, Resorts World Sentosa, the Martial Combat series featured five fights of explosive knock out action. The event, presented by ESPN STAR Sports and Resorts World Sentosa, saw 10 world-class mixed martial arts fighters battle over five fights to an almost-capacity crowd, culminating in the Superfight Championship Showdown between Jong and Steel.

All four of the other fights were won emphatically with first round stoppages to the delight of the crowd. The most eye catching performance of the night was by up-and-coming American Joe Ray who faced the stiffest test of his career against Singapore-based Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt Zorobabel Moreira.

Any lingering doubts as to Ray’s legitimacy or longevity were swiftly and brutally dispelled when the American fighter threw a vicious overhand right which knocked Moreira out cold after only 14 seconds of the fight. The crowd was stunned, as was Moreira, who took a few minutes to regain consciousness but was eventually able to leave the ring unaided. With three stoppage wins in his first three fights Ray has the mixed martial arts world at his feet. He can look forward to seeing this highlight reel knock out all over the internet in the coming weeks,

“I was surprised by how quickly the fight ended because I was expecting him to be a dangerous opponent. I had planned to use my jab for the first round but I felt he was there for the taking so I went for it. This is definitely the best performance of my career and I am looking forward to watching the fight on ESPN STAR Sports,” said Ray.

The opening fight of the night saw two fighters with extensive amateur experience make their professional debuts. Jasor Ablasi, from the Philippines got his professional career off to the best possible start by quickly taking the fight to the ground and sinking in a rear naked choke.

Australian Ian Bone and Matt Delanoit of America both came into the cage with impressive reputations and after a tentative early exchange of punches, Delanoit went for a takedown attempt which Bone eventually succumbed to. Once he has secured a dominant position Delanoit went to work on the Australian who tried a couple of up-kicks but was eventually forced to give up his back in an attempt to escape the onslaught of punches. The American used his experience to capitalize on the opening and sunk in a rear naked choke which forced Bone to tap.

Zhang Jian Jun of China looked impressive in his first fight for Martial Combat last month and was looking to make it two wins out of out of two against Canadian Robert Sothmann. Sothmann elected to go for the takedown and was almost made to pay as Zhang sank in a guillotine choke. Sothmann was able to hold on and eventually popped his head out and went for a submission of his own. The Chinese was able to defend the Kimura attempt but Sothmann switched strategies and unleashed a barrage of ground and pound to finish the fight.

Resorts World® Sentosa Martial Combat™ continues to go from strength to strength and the standard of fights and fighters is noticeably improving. This Martial Combat 3’s card featured a combination of aspiring youngsters and experienced veterans that made for some explosive action inside the cage culminating in Jong’s dramatic late stoppage win. Mixed martial arts fans like emphatic finishes and Martial Combat had five of them, and tonight’s event demonstrated perfectly why this brand new show is starting to make headlines all over South East Asia and beyond.

Mixed martial arts fans can expect even more hard-hitting action when another ten fighters do battle tomorrow, 17 June, at the majestic Compass Ballroom, Resorts World Sentosa. Kindly visit www.RWmartialcombat.com for more information.

Jasor Ablasi vs         Andrew Leone

Phillipines                                USA

Debut                                      Debut

60 kg                                       60 kg

Both men are making their professional debut but have extensive amateur experience. They exchange kicks early on with Leone landing a sharp Muay Thai style leg kick and Ablasi narrowly missing with a Wushu Side kick.

Ablasi takes the fight to the ground and secures Leone’s back. He is looking for a rear naked choke but Leone is able to defend the submission and stand up. Ablasi manages to take Leone to the ground again and secures his back to sink in a rear naked choke which Leone is simply unable to escape from. Ablasi’s performance was particularly impressive given the wrestling credentials of his opponent and he looks to be a real prospect.

Winner: Ablasi via rear naked choke after 1:02 minutes of round one.

Ian Bone vs         Matt Delanoit

Australia                                  USA

8-3                                           10-10

77kg                                        77kg

Ian Bone is one of the top MMA fighters in Australia but his opponent, Matt Delanoit, is hugely experienced and has been in there with some of the best in the business. Both men have flown in to Singapore especially for this fight and look in fantastic shape and ready to do battle in the Martial Combat cage.

The fight starts with an exchange of jabs but first blood goes to the American who lands a big right hand. He then works for a takedown but it is intelligently defended by the Australian. Delanoit pushes Bone up against the cage and eventually secures the takedown.

Delanoit scores with some ground and pound from inside Bone’s guard, Bone is attempting to defend himself but is simply unable to escape from a vulnerable position. Bone turns his back to try and escape and Delanoit lands a few hard knees to the body before securing his opponents back and sinking in the second rear naked choke of the night.

Winner: Delanoit via rear naked choke after 3:33 of round one

Zhang Jian Jun vs         Robert Sothmann

China                                       Canada

6-0                                                                                      2-3

94 kg                                       94 kg

Both these fighters are based in China but Juan Jun has the more impressive credentials with an unbeaten MMA record. Jian Juan is making his second Martial Combat appearance after an impressive submission win against Abhijeet Petkar last month.

Jian Juan is more of a stand up fighter but it is Sothmann  who comes out quickest landing a right leg kick. Jian Jun is stalking the Canadian and narrowly misses with a right head kick. Sothmann wastes little time in taking Jian Jun down but Jian Jun goes for a guillotine choke from the botttom which appears to be sunk in deep.

Sothman looks in deep trouble but shows great heart to hang in there and is eventually able to pop his head out and go for a submission of his own. Jian Jun effectively defends the kimura attempt but Sothmann switches strategy and elects to throw strikes instead. He lands a vicious barrage of ground and pound strikes which leaves the referee with no option but to intervene and stop the fight.

Winner: Sothmann via ground and pound after 1:47 of round one.

Joe Ray vs         Zorobabel Moreira

USA                                        Singapore

2-0                                           3-0

77kg                                        77kg

This eagerly awaited match up has caught the attention of the worldwide MMA media, eager to get a glimpse of highly rated youngster Joe Ray. He came up against Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt and ground fighting specialist Zorobabel Moreira with both fighter’s unbeaten records on the line.

Moreira looks to be the bigger of the two men and the Singapore based Brazilian has a partisan home crowd behind him. Ray lands an enormous overhand right seconds into the round to knock his Moreira out cold. An incredible performance from the youngster who has a really bright future in the sport. Moreira takes a long time to recover but is eventually able to leave the cage on his feet and gets a round of applause for his efforts. Expect to see this highlight reel knock out being replayed all over the internet for years to come.

Winner: Joe Ray via knock out after 14 seconds of round one

Aaron Steele vs         Jong Man Kim

USA                                        Korea

14-8                                         34-9-3

64 kg                                       64kg

Two hugely experienced fighters with 13 years of professional MMA experience between them. Jong is a K-1 and Shooto veteran and has fought at a slightly higher level than Steele.

The fight is scheduled for five rounds with a Martial Combat belt on the line and starts at a slow pace with both men looking to preserve their energy for the latter rounds.

Both fighters fought in sporadic bursts in tentative early exchanges. Steele is the busier of the two landing a few sharp leg kicks and Jong spending the majority of the second round on his back.

It appears that this might be a strategy on behalf of the Korean who exploded into action in round three with some vicious combinations of punches and a few leg kicks of his own. Steele survived the onslaught but the tide seems to have turned in the Korean’s favour.

With both men visibly tiring Steele regains the initiative in round four with a well executed takedown. The action has slowed substantially but Steele was able to keep the Korean on his back while landing enough shots to deter the referee from standing them up. Jong delighted the crowd by reversing the position late in the round and landing a few shots from on top of Steele but it was probably too little too late to actually win the round.

Both men were exhausted and reluctant to exchange in the fifth and final round. Steele seemed on course for a decision victory in what has been a fairly uneventful fight. Then, with less than a minute remaining, Jong sent Steele crashing to the canvass and unleashed a relentless assault on the American, forcing the referee to call a halt to the contest with barely 30 seconds remaining. What drama!

Winner: Jong via TKO after 4:25 of the fifth round, wins Martial Combat Featherweight Superfight Belt

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