Lowen Tynanes was completely unknown when the URCC decided to match him with Eduard Folayang. He finished the Filipino in under a round and after a performance like that ONE Championship, or ONE FC as it was known back then, basically had to sign him.

The Hawaiian proved that the victory over Folayang was no flash in the pan. He made his ONE Championship debut in 2013 and won six fights out of six for the promotion.

A title shot would have been inevitable but Tynanes’ career has been badly disrupted by illness and injury. He has only fought once in the past four years but says he has finally got to the root of the problem,

“Throughout the years, I was having some back issues, and over the past year and a half, I discovered that I have an autoimmune disease called spondyloarthritis,” he says.

Daily struggle

It is not a condition many people will be familiar with but Tynanes explains it as follows,

“It is chronic inflammation to your joints. We figured out that that was the underlying cause of my back issues, and it progressed to my shoulder and even in my feet.”

The 30 year old was unable to lead a normal life, let along compete at an elite level of MMA,

“There used to be days when it was a struggle to even get out of bed because the pain was intolerable, but the symptoms just dropped.”

Fit and healthy

Tynanes says he has been fit and healthy for six months and puts this down to a change in diet,

“I went to see so many different doctors and tried different diets — everything you can think of — but the best thing was a nutritionist. I had a full blood test and now I’m eating for my body type. It’s been night and day since I started that six months ago.”

Tynanes will be looking to improve on his 10-0 record when he faces former featherweight champion Marat Gafurov at ONE: ‘Collision Course’ this Friday. He says he is in good shape ahead of his comeback fight in Singapore,

“Today, I feel refreshed, no inflammation, pretty much injury-free and able to compete again.”

Staying perfect

Having been through a lot in the last six years Tynanes is unable to countenance the possibility of losing his perfect professional record,

“You don’t want to do a full six-to-eight week camp, fly across the world, quarantine, and go through all these medicals and interviews to then lose. I don’t plan on losing at all. I will do everything and anything in my power to come out victorious.”

Standing in his way is a former featherweight champion looking to make a big impression in the lightweight division. But Tynanes thinks there are some weaknesses in Gafurov’s game,

“I’ve seen him fight a bunch of times and the guy’s a gamer, so I’m prepared for it all. Every opponent is dangerous and anything can happen at any given moment, so all I do is prepare for the worst situations, work on my weaknesses, work on my strengths, and try to exploit his weaknesses.”

Still here

No-one in the lightweight division has a better ONE Championship record than Tynanes. He was recently instated at #5 in the lightweight rankings despite having been out of action for nearly two years.

Younger fans might not even recognize the name. But those with longer memories will remember what Tynanes did to fighters like Folayang and he wants to remind everyone what he is capable of on Friday,

“I want to show the fans that I’m still here. I’ve been gone for a little while, dealing with some personal life issues but I’m back.”

If Tynanes can continue his ONE Championship career where he left off it will be bad news for the other fighters in the lightweight division. The Hawaiian is determined to do just that and believes he is still the same fighter who burst onto the scene and proved unbeatable,

“Expect fireworks like always, explosive pressure non stop. I have not changed. I’m still the same guy.”