Bibiano Fernandes defeats Martin Nguyen by split decision to remain One bantamweight champion

Australia’s Martin Nguyen has just fallen short in his attempt to become a three division One Championship title holder, losing to Bibiano Fernandes by split decision.

Fernandes successfully defended his bantamweight title against Nguyen in Bangkok, Thailand in a fight that went the full five rounds.

It was a close contest that saw both competitors have their moments over the first four rounds. Nguyen appeared to get the better of the striking for much of the early stages, including landing an elbow that produced a nasty cut on Fernandes head in round three.

Racking up ONE more win, “The Flash” remains the most dominant world champion in ONE history with a split decision victory over Martin Nguyen.

Racking up ONE more win, “The Flash” remains the most dominant world champion in ONE history with a split decision victory over Martin Nguyen.

Posted by ONE Championship on Saturday, March 24, 2018

The fight may have ultimately come down to the fifth and final round in the eyes of the judges. Fernandes landed a straight right hand that dropped Nguyen late in final round, the Aussie managed to clinch Fernandes and avoid any more punishment before the bell rang for the end of the fight.

Nguyen came into the fight looking to make history by being the first fighter to win three belts in three separate weight classes concurrently in a major MMA organisation. The loss drops Nguyen’s record to 10-2, he remains the One Championship lightweight and featherweight champion.

The win was Fernandes’ seventh straight defence of his bantamweight title, he has not lost since 2010 and is now riding a fourteen-fight win streak with an overall record of 22-3.

“I really needed this challenge for my life right now,” Fernandes said in the cage post-fight. “I’m the champion and I’m here to stay. I’m the best bantamweight in the world.”

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