Superlek Kiatmoo9 put on a kickboxing masterclass to defeat Takeru at ONE 165. The Thai took a unanimous decision win to defend his flyweight title at the Ariake Arena in Japan.

Takeru has spent virtually his entire career competing under kickboxing rules and is a fan favourite in Japan. Superlek had talked about using the first round as a feeling out process but instead he immediately established the jab while pounding his opponent’s left leg with low kicks.

Superlek continued with this strategy in the second round and Takeru already looked to be limping. The Japanese fighter rallied in the third and set about pounding his opponent’s rib cage with hard hooks.

Superlek could only cover up and try to ride out the round. He managed to do just that but the crowd at the Ariake Arena was on its feet as Takeru started coming from behind.

Decision win

Unfortunately for the fighter and the Japanese fans Superlek regained his composure in the fourth. He continued to pop out the jab and score with low kicks while landing some solid looking step in knees.

The knees were a factor in the final round too as Superlek used all his weapons to keep Takeru at bay. He looked tired in the closing exchanges but was able to see out the round and take a unanimous decision win.

The scorecards all read 49-46 in favour of the Thai fighter who remains the flyweight kickboxing champion. There was only disappointment for Takeru who has now lost the two biggest matches in his career, losing to Tenshin Nasukawa and Superlek.

Late notice

In a very late change Sage Northcutt was replaced by John Lineker. The American withdrew hours before the event when he discovered that two of his corner men had been turned away from Japan.

Stepping in to replace him was Lineker. The Brazilian took on Shinya Aoki in a last minute fight that featured two former champions who compete in completely different divisions.

Lineker held the bantamweight belt while Aoki was lightweight champion. In his final fight for ONE Championship the Japanese fighter earned a first round submission win, finishing the fight with a rear naked choke.

The win takes Aoki’s record to 48-11-0-1 and it will be interesting to see where he ends up next. Lineker drops to 37-11 but probably hasn’t damaged his reputation with this defeat, having stepped up at such late notice to take on a much bigger opponent.

ONE 165, Tokyo, January 28th
Kickboxing: Superlek Kiatmoo9 def. Takeru Segawa via Decision (Unanimous)
Submission Grappling: Kade Ruotolo (c) def. Tommy Langaker via Decision (Unanimous)
Shinya Aoki def. John Lineker via Submission (Rear-naked choke) at 3:00 of R1
Mixed rules: Nieky Holzken def. Yoshihiro Akiyama via TKO (Punches) at 1:40 of R1
Kickboxing: Marat Grigorian def. via Sittichai Sitsongpeenong via KO (Knee and punch to the body) at 1:20 of R3
Garry Tonon def. Martin Nguyen via Submission (Rear-naked choke) at 4:41 of R1
Ayaka Miura def. Itsuki Hirata via Decision (Unanimous)
Yuya Wakamatsu def. Danny Kingad via Decision (Unanimous)
Kickboxing: Rade Opačić def. Iraj Azizpour via Decision (Unanimous)
Bokang Masunyane def. Keito Yamakita via Decision (Unanimous)
Gustavo Balart def. Hiroba Minowa via Decision (Split)