Chatri Sityodtong was speaking at the H.E.R Asia Summit few weeks back on the 1 November 2017 as he shared about how he revolutionised the Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) sport and groomed women competitors like the likes of Angela Lee and May Ooi, to rise and succeed in the male-dominated sport. Besides the groomed athletes who are his women warriors, he shared briefly about how his mother raised him up single-handedly when his father left the family. It was such an inspirational speech as he shared about his rags-to-riches stories.
As I have never been to a MMA match, I could only imagine and thought it must be somewhat like a typical national sports match in the stadium?
We were thankful for being invited to watch the One Championship match (Thanks to the One Championship team): Immortal Pursuit on Friday, 24 November 2017 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. And I was awed by the amount of detail and effort in pulling off such a fantastic “show”. It was such an eye-opening experience and it changed my perspective!
It was more like an entertaining “show” than a boring match-after-match tournament with guest singers like Tabitha Nauser performing and every fighter was highlighted like a comic super star, with a nickname that best describes them or a signature look or move.
The display of the fighters’ stories and background on screen was fascinating. The fighters were all displayed like a comic superstar fighter before they appear walking down the ramp with their flags to the cage. They did really well in personal branding in this case.
We were hoping to see Angela Lee and we did! It was unfortunate that she had to give up this match due to her recent accident.
We were waiting eagerly for our Singaporean athletes and the first was contender Tiffany “No Chill” Teo, who was up against India’s Puja Tomar. Teo defeated Tomar in the first round via armbar. You could hear the “lions” roar when Teo won the match.
“No Chill” Teo winning the match!
The next Singaporean athlete was Former Singapore Olympian and champion swimmer turned martial artist, “Mighty” May Ooi. She battled with Cambodia’s “Pretty Punch” Vy Srey Khouch and defeated her with a bout-ending choke. Fellow Singaporeans were once again roaring with pride! “We have fighters…Hopefully for an early Christmas present, I’m looking for a title shot sometime next year,”Ooi exclaimed.
Interview with “Mighty” May Ooi
Our third Singaporean athlete was Amir Khan, who outlasted Adrian Pang, a battle-tested veteran from Australia who is more than a decade older than Khan. Khan’s moves where unforgiving with his consistent punches and head kicks. “Adrian Pang is one hell of a fighter, he may old in age but he has a heart of a young lion.” exclaimed Pang.
Khan with the Singapore flag
Local singer and DJ Tabitha Nauser led the National Anthem and we could observe the beaming faces of the audience.
The show ended with confetti in the air and there was so much energy. It was such an exciting and heart-thumbing performance that our discussion about it continued as we headed back home. (There was an after-event party at 1-Altitude which we missed though)
Kudos to our women warriors. We are all looking forward to the next match!
Posing with the ONE belt
Written by Renee Tan, Founder & MD of Rendeur, H.E.R Entrepreneur. Renee inspires, educate and empower aspiring women entrepreneurs, besides educating corporate professionals in excelling in functional skill sets such as sales, marketing, customer service, exhibition strategies and communication skills.