ONE: ‘Spirit of Champions’ has a new main event after Chi Lewis Parry was pulled from the card at just a few days notice.
The organisation’s CEO Victor Cui posted a message on Facebook late on Tuesday night claiming Lewis Parry failed to submit a drug test.
“After multiple requests made by ONE Officials directly to Chi Lewis Parry and his Manager over the last few weeks, Chi has failed to submit his medical results and his drug tests for the fight this Friday,” Cui wrote.
“Additionally, he decided not to board the plane departing from London to Manila. He will not be fighting this Friday.”
The next top heavyweight contender, Paul Cheng will now step in for the World Championship fight against Brandon Vera.
Cheng is stepping up to replace Lewis Parry and will now be fighting Brandon Vera for the inaugural ONE heavyweight title in Friday night’s main event. The Taiwanese heavyweight is a former professional boxer who has two wins for the organization.
Cheng (5-1) signed for ONE Championship in 2013 and finished Alain Ngalani in the first round on his promotional debut in Manila. The following year he faced Mahmoud Hassan in his native Taiwan and won courtesy of another TKO.
However Cheng face a big step up in competition at the Mall of Asia Arena this Friday. Vera (13-7-0-1) is a UFC veteran who has been in with the likes of Frank Mir, Tim Sylvia, Fabricio Werdum, Randy Couture, Jon Jones and Mauricio Rua.
The 37-year-old is of Filipino heritage and has a huge fan following in Manila. He beat Igor Subora on his ONE Championship debut last year and will be looking to win an MMA title for the first time since becoming the WEC Heavyweight Grand Prix winner in 2005.
ONE: “Spirit of Champions” is set for the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila on Friday night.