After Jonas Boeno submitted Myung Ho Bae to become the welterweight champion at AFC 11 in April 2019, the title stayed idle. Almost two years later, Seok Hyun Ko reigned supreme over Jae Young Ahn to capture the vacant belt at in Seoul.

Whenever a kickboxer faces off against a Sambo fighter, the striking exchanges are most likely dominated by the specialist. This was not the case in the main event of AFC 16.

Ko struck first with a devastating left hook that dropped his opponent. He swarmed and pounded Ahn with more left hands. Although Ahn was able to get upright after eating a slew of punches, Ko dragged him back to the mat and commenced with more ground and pound.

Seok Hyun Ko punches Jae Young Ahn 1

Grit and toughness

Ahn showing his grit and toughness ate all the shots and got back up. They danced around and then Ko rushed in and connected with a right straight, uppercut combo.

Ahn was able to clinch up and slow the action down until the end of the round. The Team Macho representative walked to the corner with the left side of his face busted up badly.

Ahn entered the middle stanza refreshed and attacked the legs while Ko missed big with looping punches. Just when it looked like Ahn was getting his footing, Ko executed a trip takedown that dictated where the rest of the round would play out.

The Team Stun Gun staple rode his foe like a horse and pounded him from all angles even attempting a rear-naked choke just to keep him guessing. Ahn ended the round with a busted-up nose and noticeable swelling all over his face.

Seok Hyun Ko punches Jae Young Ahn

Winning streak

The final round was a continuation of the beating Ahn was taking. Ko completely dominated in the grappling and landed a myriad of punches from every position and never lost control of the momentum. The only thing holding Ahn together was his heart.

The 27-year-old Ko takes the welterweight title by unanimous decision and elevates his record to 6-1 while extending his win streak to five. Meanwhile, Ahn loses his fourth straight and drops to 2-5.

During the post-fight interview, the newly crowned champ challenged Jae Young Kim for his middleweight title. Kim responded by saying that he will take care of Ko and then go after his coach former UFC welterweight Dong Hyun Kim.

Seok Hyun Ko winner

Devastating performance

In the most devastating performance of the evening, Team Stun Gun product Joo Sang Yoo (1-0) thoroughly pummeled Baek Ho Jang (1-1) for three minutes landing at will with crisp boxing combos. Even when the 10th Planet disciple Jang tried to pull the fight to the ground, he just ended up eating more shots and bled profusely.

The referee saw enough and stopped the fight in the middle of the first round, saving Jang from sustaining even more damage. Yoo makes an impressive professional debut while Jang suffers his first defeat.

Joo Sang Yoo

Best of the rest

Jae Wook Myung entered the night as one of the most promising up-and-comers on the regional scene. Yet it was Zombie MMA’s Jae Hyun Park that took home the victory with a second-round submission even though he was returning from an 18 month layoff.

After losing his pro debut at Angel’s Heroes 2, the 19-year-old Park (2-1) has strung together back-to-back finishes. On the flipside, Myung (6-2) has lost consecutive fights after a six-fight win streak to start his career.

The night started off with a pair of 19-year-old featherweights when June He Jung of Wang Ho MMA faced off against Zombie MMA’s Si Won Kim. Despite controlling the center of the cage, Kim was rattled by a counter right hand and finished with heavy punches with seconds left in the first round.

While Jung moves to 2-0, Kim loses for the first time and drops to 1-1.

AFC 16, Seoul, May 31st
Seok Hyun Ko def. Jae Young Ahn via Decision (Unanimous) at 5:00 of Round 3 [Welterweight Title]
Sang Ok Kim def. Song Ha Lee via Decision (Unanimous) at 5:00 of Round 2
Jae Hyun Park def. Jae Wook Myung via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) at 2:20 of Round 2
Joo Sang Yoo def. Baek Ho Jang via TKO (Strikes) at 3:20 of Round 1
Jin Min Kim def. Beom Jun Cha via Decision (Unanimous) at 5:00 of Round 2
June He Jung def. Si Won Kim via TKO (Punches) at 4:58 of Round 1