Martin Nguyen got back to his winning ways at ONE Fight Night 7: Lineker vs. Andrade II this past weekend.
“The Situ-Asian” was tested by late call-up Leonardo Casotti at Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, but ultimately showed his class in the featherweight MMA tilt.
The former two-weight World Champion prevailed via unanimous decision at the February 25 blockbuster, keeping his World Title hopes alive in the process.
The first round was a competitive affair, with the pair trading low kicks. It was Nguyen, however, that won the battle, as Casotti began to show the effects of the leg attacks.
Nguyen rocked Casotti with his trademark right hand midway through round two, but the Brazilian kickboxing champion was able to recover and continued to try to ward the Australian star off with kicks.
The third frame was also competitive, but with two minutes remaining in the contest it was Nguyen that landed his first takedown of the fight.
The fight ended with Nguyen raining down elbows from mount as Casotti hung on to see the final bell.
All three judges scored in favour of Nguyen, returning the 33-year-old to win column.
A loss for the #4 ranked featherweight would likely have spelled the end of his hopes of regaining his title. Nguyen entered the bout with a 1-3 mark in his previous four appearances, beginning with his title loss to American star Thanh Le back in 2020.
It was a wild fight week for the Sydneysider, after his original opponent – #5 ranked Shamil Gasanov – was forced to pull out from the fight due to illness. Late replacement Razhab Shaydullaev then failed his medicals just days before fight night, throwing Nguyen’s plans into disarray once again.
Fortunately, Casotti answered the call. The Thailand-based Brazilian was scheduled to fight on ONE Friday Fights 6 on the same weekend and at the same venue.
In the main event of ONE Fight Night 7, Fabricio “Wonder Boy” Andrade claimed the vacant ONE Bantamweight World Title in the highly-anticipated rematch against fellow-Brazilian John Lineker.
The fight was waved off following four rounds of back-and-forth action, as Lineker’s corner decided that the damage to the face of “Hands of Stone” was too much.