ONE 166 has a main event and it is a rematch. Anatoly Malykhin meets Reinier de Ridder for the second time in Qatar on March 1st but the circumstances will be very different.

The last fight took place at light heavyweight and Malykhin was too big and powerful for de Ridder. This time they will be facing off for the middleweight belt meaning that the Russian will have to lose a lot of weight.

Malykhin (13-0) holds the ONE Championship heavyweight and light heavyweight titles. He won the latter by stopping de Ridder in the opening round last year.

He weighed 223.5lbs for that fight but will need to get down to 205lbs in order to challenge for the middleweight belt. For his heavyweight fights Malykhin typically weighs closer to 240lbs.

De Ridder (16-1) has not competed in MMA since Malykhin handed him the first defeat of his career. The reigning middleweight champion did return to action for a submission grappling bout earlier this year, losing to Tye Ruotolo at ONE Fight Night 10.

Three fights

As previously announced fights have been confirmed for ONE 166 and one of them will have a title on the line. The event is set for Qatar on March 1st and will feature a rematch between reigning strawweight champion Jarred Brooks and former champion Joshua Pacio.

Brooks (20-2-0-1) won the belt by beating Pacio at ONE 164 in Manila last year. He has yet to defend the belt and was last seen getting submitted by Mikey Musumeci in a flyweight bout fought under submission grappling rules.

By contrast Pacio (21-4) has been active in MMA. He is coming off a decision win over previously undefeated Russian Mansur Malachiev at ONE Fight Night 10.

Heavyweight contenders

Amir Aliakbari (13-3) has been matched with Arjan Bhullar (11-2) in a heavyweight fight between two former Anatoly Malykhin victims. Both men lost to the Russian who is the reigning heavyweight champion.

Bhullar is a former heavyweight champion but has not won a fight since beating Brandon Vera at ONE: โ€˜Dangalโ€™. Aliakbari has managed to win three in a row since his loss to Malykhin.

Submission grappling

The other fight on the card will be contested under submission grappling rules. Osamah Almarwai faces Cleber Sousa in a flyweight fight with the latter sure to get good support from the Qatar crowd.

Almarwai hails from Yemen and is coming off a submission loss at the hands of Mikey Musumeci at ONE Fight Night 10 in May. Sousa is also coming off a defeat to the American although he did manage to go the distance.

ONE 166, Qatar, March 1st
Reinier de Ridder (c) vs. Anatoly Malykhin (For middleweight title)
Jarred Brooks (c) vs. Joshua Pacio (for Strawweight title)
Amir Aliakbari vs. Arjan Bhullar (Heavyweight)
Submission Grappling: Osamah Almarwai vs. Cleber Sousa (Flyweight)