Business World

ONE Championsh­ip creates Super Series league

- Michael Angelo S. Murillo

IN LINE with its vision to continue bringing forward one of Asia’s greatest cultural treasures — martial arts — and the core values of integrity, honor, respect, humility, discipline, courage and compassion that go with it, ONE Championsh­ip recently announced the creation of a Super Series designed to complement and enhance what it has charted as an organizati­on.

The Super Series is a unique martial arts league that will feature other Asian martial art forms like Muay Thai, Lethwei, Silat, Karate, Tae Kwon Do, Sambo, Kung Fu, Sanda and Wushu.

ONE, Asia’s largest sports media property, hopes that through the league it can provide another pathway for martial artists to showcase what they can do on a profession­al level apart from the mixed martial arts offerings it has become known for since setting up shop in 2011.

“In the same way that Starbucks offers many flavors of coffee and tea, we offer all martial arts. ONE Championsh­ip is the home of martial arts. We have earned that reputation over the last couple of years, and so instead of mixed martial arts, as a fight fan and as a martial arts lover, you now get to see all forms of martial arts for the very first time in history,” said Chatri Sityodtong, ONE chairman and CEO, in a recent conference call with global media whose transcript was shared to BusinessWo­rld.

“So you will see matches of, you know, Muay Thai versus Tae Kwon Do, or Tae Kwon Do ver- sus Kung Fu, and the list goes on and on. This is a massive gamechangi­ng moment, not just for ONE Championsh­ip but also for the world of martial arts,” he added.

ONE said that early on the Super Series will be part of its MMA live events but eventually would be an event all its own once it gets its footing among the fans and other stakeholde­rs.

The ONE Super Series is set to debut on April 20 here in Manila at the “ONE: Heroes of Honour” show at the Mall of Asia Arena.

“April 20 is our first ring event. Basically it will be half mixed martial arts and half striking. You’ll see the initial glimpse of what ONE Super Series is all about. But we envision ONE Super Series as a standalone event. This year we plan to do 24 events, but next year we plan to do 36 events and so a big portion of those 36 events will be ONE Super Series standalone events in a ring, or in a cage, depending on the athletes competing. That’s the f lexibility we’re offering. Again, it’s a wider platform of martial arts. This is what ONE Championsh­ip is all about as the home of martial arts,” Mr. Sityodtong said.

Meanwhile, ONE Championsh­ip will have an event today in Myanmar dubbed “Quest for Gold” and will feature the light heavyweigh­t title clash between hometown bet Aung La N Sang and Brazilian challenger Alexandre Machado.

Also competing in the event are Filipinos Roel Rosauro (featherwei­ght) and Krisna Limbaga ( women’s atomweight). —

 ??  ?? TRADITIONA­L MUAY THAI is one Asian martial arts form that will be featured in the newly announced ONE Super Series.
TRADITIONA­L MUAY THAI is one Asian martial arts form that will be featured in the newly announced ONE Super Series.

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