Asia’s largest mixed martial arts promotion, One Championship, will return behind closed doors in Thailand next month after a five-month break due to the coronavirus, authorities said Monday.
One, which promotes cards across the region in mixed martial arts, Muay Thai, and kickboxing, was the last time he put on a big show in late February.
Since then, the Singapore-based company has canceled several events and cut 20 percent of its staff, although it also revealed a $ 70 million increase in funding from institutional investors.
With the slowdown in virus outbreaks in many parts of Asia, the company said its iconic events would restart with a fan-free event in the Thai capital Bangkok on July 31.
“Most national borders remain closed in Asia, and this has posed unique logistical and operational challenges,” said One CEO Chatri Sityodtong.
The first three main bouts of the “One: No Surrender” event have been confirmed.
Participating wrestlers include world flyweight champion Muay Thai Rodtang “The Iron Man” Jitmuangnon, Petchdam “The Baby Shark” Petchyindee Academy and “The Boxing Computer” Yodsanklai IWE Fairtex.
One had already fought in his Hero series, feeding events for the main championship, in China in June, before deciding to resume the main shows.
The US-based Ultimate Fighting Championship became one of the first sports to restart after the coronavirus.
So far, the UFC has performed six successful shows in tightly controlled environments in Jacksonville, Florida, and Las Vegas.