A rousing title bout awaits fight fans around the globe on August 26th, as current ONE featherweight champion Thanh Le takes on Tang Kai from China at ONE 160.
Incumbent featherweight champion, Vietnamese-American Thanh Le, faces the number one ranked contender Tang Kai in the main event at ONE 160. The event will be live from the Indoor Stadium, Singapore.
Fighting out of Louisiana, Le will seek to extend his 5-win streak and defend his title. With a record of 13-2, he holds a 100% finish rate, including 12 knockouts and one submission win.
When Thanh Lee knockout out Garry Tonon after just 56 seconds, the fight world held its breath. Kai might prove Le’s toughest challenge yet, with a record of 14-2, and who recently knocked out the former number-1 ranked contender to earn his title shot.
Attending the press conference announcing the fight, there was widespread interest in this exhilarating bout. One thing is for certain, said the reigning champion: the fight is not going to decision.
Tang Kai, fighting out of China, has dreamed of this fight happening for a long time. He spoke of envisioning becoming the first champion from China if he wins, which would mean a tremendous lot to him. The discussion between the athletes became akin to a debate, with the main topic being their respective styles. Le was recently awarded his BJJ black belt, and he was confident that this will help him in his fight. The Chinese contender claimed he, on the other hand, is on another level of striking and is not worried about Le’s grappling. Moreover, Kai thinks Le and his team underestimate him. Le had spoken about his analysis of Kai’s style, but Kai retorted “You say I am a Muay Thai fighter, but I am not. I move much more, and you know that!”
The main weakness Kai sees in Le is his “weak chin,” inviting Le’s quick quip that “you have to hit it first.” The affection with which they speak about the sport, however, is apparent. Le sees this fight as a rubics cube that he will unlock. He believes he has a lot of experience and a superior fighter IQ. All of this, he says, can be used to his advantage. Kai disagreed vehemently, stating Le started much later and he can’t compare his experience to Kai’s own.
The respect between the combatants, despite their discussions, was made clear. Asked from 0-100 where Kai scores himself against Le as an athlete, Kai placed himself around 60-70, while he gave 80 for Le. “He is the champ, he deserves it.”
ONE 160 will be live-streamed on ONE’s YouTube Chanel on August 26th.Lyssna på det senaste avsnittet av Fighterpodden!