ONE Championship to make Shanghai debut on Sept. 2

ONE Championship will hold its inaugural Shanghai event on September 2 at Pudong's Oriental Sports Center.

The ONE Championship will hold its inaugural Shanghai event on September 2, organizers announced on Thursday.

In the main event, welterweight world champion Ben Askren of the United States will defend his title against Swedish challenger Zebaztian Kadestam at the Shanghai Oriental Sports Center in Pudong New Area.

ONE, one of Asia’s best-known MMA (mixed martial arts) series, was to debut in Shanghai two years ago, but eventually the stop was canceled due to a clash with a local event. But it has been a long-time wish of organizers to bring their elite fighters to Shanghai audiences.

“We are ready to showcase the world’s most authentic display of martial arts,” said Chatri Sityodtong, chairman and CEO of ONE Championship. “China is one of our biggest markets, a country with rich cultural history of martial arts. In the main event in Shanghai, the interesting clash of styles should provide fans a solid matchup.”

The sport of MMA allows fighters to use a variety of martial arts styles, including judo, kung fu, silat, jiu-jitsu or kali, wrestling or aikido. In a rock concert-like arena, audience watch one-on-one contests with fighters competing in unarmed combat in a caged ring.

Ben “Funky” Askren is a collegiate wrestler who represented the US at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. His opponent Zebaztian “The Bandit” Kadestam boasts a 9-3 professional record, and is known for his wide array of striking and grappling techniques.

Other fighters announced for the Shanghai event include 41-year-old veteran Narantungalag Jadambaa of Mongolia and Japan’s promising young fighter Tetsuya Yamada. Chinese bantamweight contender Miao Litao is set to make his ONE Championship debut against compatriot and 23-year-old Inner Mongolian native Liu Deli.

Also making her debut is Beijing-based former professional boxer Xu Chunyan, who will take on 19-year-old Cambodian Eh Ya Nut, a Khun Khmer specialist.

Shanghai's 30-year-old flyweight competitor Miao Jie will showcase her skills against Mona Samir of Egypt. There will also be a three-round battle between two Shanghai-based competitors — Zhang Zehao, a sanda and Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioner, and Li Chengchao, who has a boxing background.

Ticket information is available at

ONE Championship to make Shanghai debut on Sept. 2

A promotion poster of the upcoming ONE Championship event in Shanghai.

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