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.

Submission grappling

De Ridder was last seen taking on Andre Galvao in a submission grappling bout at ONE: ‘X’. He fought to a draw with the much bigger man and has openly discussed the possibility of challenging for the heavyweight title.

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)