Anderson Silva is set to return to MMA. The Brazilian is coming off a loss in a kickboxing contest but will be competing in a different sport at ONE 159 next month.

He is booked to face Mikhail Jamal Abdul Latif in a heavyweight fight at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on July 22nd. Silva (3-2) is a Glory veteran who is better known for his exploits as a kickboxer than a mixed martial artist.

But the 35 year old made huis debut back in 2016 and is a veteran of five MMA fights. In his most recent bout he was submitted in the opening round by fellow Brazilian Marcus Almeida.

Latif (3-0) boasts a perfect professional record. But the Dutchman last fought in 2013 and is coming out of retirement after a nine year break to take on one of the top kickboxers in the division.

Top ranked

Also on the card is a clash between two top ranked strawweights. Bokang Masunyane (8-1) will be looking to bounce back from the first defeat of his career when he takes on Hiroba Minowa (13-3).

Both men are coming off losses to Jarred Brooks although the Japanese fighter went the distance while the South African was stopped in the opening round. Brooks is set to fight for the strawweight title next.

Also in the strawweight division up and coming contender Danial Williams (5-1) will be looking to underline his title credentials. He has bee matched with Chinese newcomer Zelang Xhaxi (16-6) who enjoyed success on ONE Hero Series.

Title fight

As previously announced Reinier de Ridder will take on Vitaly Bigdash at ONE 159 in Singapore on July 22nd. The Russian’s reward for beating Aung La Nsang in their trilogy bout is a shot at the reigning middleweight champion.

De Ridder (15-0) has rapidly established himself as the best pound for pound fighter on the ONE Championship roster, capturing the light heavyweight and middleweight titles. The BJJ black belt has won six fights out of six since signing for the promotion in 2019.

Bigdash (12-2) is the former ONE Championship middleweight champion and has been on the roster since 2015. But he has had terrible luck with injuries and only fought seven times in the last seven years.

Bigdash earned his title shot by beating Aung La Nsang at ONE: ‘Full Circle’ earlier this year. He will be looking to recapture the belt he lost to La Nsang in 2017.

Muay Thai

The event is set for the Singapore Indoor Stadium and will also feature a Muay Thai title fight. Janet Todd will be putting her atomweight title on the line against promotional newcomer Lara Fernandez.

The decision to hand a title shot to a relatively unknown Spanish newcomer is sure to raise a few eyebrows. Anissa Meksen has won two fights out of two for ONE Championship and has been campaigning very publicly for a shot at Todd.

Todd has avoided publicly commenting on the situation, saying she doesn’t want to get involved. But Meksen is unlikely to be happy about being overlooked, particularly as Fernandez has never fought for ONE Championship.

ONE 159, Singapore, July 22nd
Reinier de Ridder (c) vs. Vitaly Bigdash (For middleweight title)
Muay Thai: Janet Todd (c) vs Lara Fernandez (For atomweight title)
Bokang Masunyane vs. Hiroba Minowa (Strawweight)
Muay Thai: Muangthai PKSaenchaigym vs. Vladimir Kuzmin (Bantamweight)
Kickboxing: Zhang Peimian vs. Aslanbeek Zikreev (Strawweight)
Zelang Xhaxi vs. Danial Williams (Strawweight)
Muay Thai: Sinsamut Klinmee vs. Islam Murtazaev (Lightweight)
Ariel Sexton vs. Marat Gafurov (Lightweight)
Submission Grappling: Jessa Khan vs. Amanda Alequin (Atomweight)
Jin Tae Ho vs. Valmir da Silva (Welterweight)
Mikhail Jamal Abdul Latif vs. Anderson Silva (Heavyweight)
Lea Bivins vs. Zeba Bano (Atomweight)