ONE Championship Welterweight World Championship in Manila between reigning champion Ben “Funky” Askren and title challenger Luis Santos ended in a no contest ruling after Santos was poked in the eye during an exchange.

After an exciting start to the five-round match which saw Santos successfully defend several takedown attempts from Askren, an eye poke halted the fight and, ultimately ended it.

After ONE Championship officials verified the eye poke, referee Olivier Coste gave Santos five minutes to recover. However, after five minutes, Santos’ vision was still impaired, ending the fight before it really began.

Some reports on Twitter say Santos suffered a corneal abrasion and will need to wear an eye patch for up to three weeks.

In other bouts, Filipino-American Mark Striegl showed the world that he is definitely more than just hype by dominating the very tough Casey Suire.

Striegl took Suire down with a side headlock in the opening moments. The Filipino then moved to take Suire’s back and from there it was just a matter of time before Striegl was able to sink in a Rear Naked Choke, forcing Suire to tap out.

Anatpong Bunrad scored an upset victory over Team Lakay’s Geje Eustaquio in a close fight in front of Eustaquio’s home crowd in Manila. Eustaquio played the role of aggressor for most of the bout, while Bunrad opted to lay back and counter.

Eustaquio, known for his well-rounded striking game, dictated the pace with his boxing and Wushu. Both fighters had their moments in close exchanges but Bunrad scored on a pair of takedowns, including one in the final round that sealed the deal. In the end, Bunrad just narrowly eclipsed Eustaquio by Split Decision, earning two of the three judges’ favor.

The charismatic Eugene Toquero brought the crowd to its feet with an exciting grappling performance against Brianata Rosadhi. Toquero dominated the entire fight for as long as it lasted, defeating Rosadhi by scintillating ground and pound in the first round. Within seconds, Toquero took down Rosadhi and worked on a pair of Rear Naked Choke attempts. When that was no longer available, Toquero took top position and began punishing Rosadhi with sharp elbows. Referee Joey Lepiten then stepped in to stop the bout.

After an impressive showcase of strikes, Edward Kelly finished off fellow Filipino Jimmy Yabo with a Rear Naked Choke in the very first round. Kelly started off quick with high velocity kicks, a staple of Wushu Sanshou as Yabo tried his best to defend from the onslaught. In the clinch, Kelly worked his way to take Yabo’s back and sunk in the choke with a minute left to go in the round. Still on his feet, Yabo signalled to the referee that he had enough by tapping the mat.

Amir Khan improved his record with a thorough victory over Bashir Ahmad in a tremendous display of grit from both warriors. Both men came out striking in the first round, with Ahmad landing some solid right hands while Khan worked his opponent’s body with vicious knees. After their war of attrition continued in the second, a cut opened up on Ahmad’s eyebrow. With his vision obscured, the referee had no choice but to stop the fight and award Khan the victory.

ONE Championship newcomer, flyweight Liu Xiao Yang, ended matters early against opponent Nicholas Lee, winning by stoppage just minutes into the first round. Liu looped a wide but powerful right hook to Lee’s temple that dropped and knocked him out as referee Olivier Coste stepped in to call a halt to the contest.

Wang Ya Wei and Sunoto kicked off an exciting night of fights at ONE: VALOR OF CHAMPIONS in a featherweight bout. Wang easily handled Sunoto, defeating the Indonesian striking specialist by ground and pound in the third round after a timid start from both fighters.


Welterweight World Championship bout
Ben Askren vs Luis Santos (No Contest)

Bantamweight bout
Mark Striegl defeats Casey Suire
Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 3:48 of Round 1

Catchweight bout (57.1kg)
Anatpong Bunrad defeats Geje Eustaquio
Split Decision

Flyweight bout
Eugene Toquero defeats Brianata Rosadhi
TKO (Strikes) at 3:41 of Round 1

Featherweight bout
Edward Kelly defeats Jimmy Yabo
Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 4:05 of Round 1

Catchweight bout (68kg)
Amir Khan defeats Bashir Ahmad
TKO (Doctor Stoppage) at 3:20 of Round 2

Flyweight bout
Liu Xiao Yang defeats Nicholas Lee
Knockout at 1:59 of Round 1

Featherweight bout
Wang Ya Wei defeats Sunoto
TKO (Strikes) at 1:21 of Round 3