MMA

Japan’s Yoshitaka Naito redeems ONE Strawweight World Champion belt in Indonesia

Hailing from Matsudo, Chiba, Japan, Yoshitaka “Nobita” Naito, 34, of Japan was an undefeated mixed martial artist from 2012 to 2016. On December 9, 2017, he had his first loss in his professional MMA career when he unsuccessfully defended his ONE Strawweight World Champion belt from Alex “Little Rock” Silva, 35, of Ubatuba, Sao Paulo, Brazil at “ONE: Warriors of the World.”

Silva became the new ONE Strawweight World Champion after defeating Naito via unanimous decision. On May 12, 2018, the rematch between the two took place at “ONE: Grit and Glory” at the Jakarta Convention Center in Jakarta with Olivier Coste as the referee.

After five five-minute rounds, the strawweight bout between Naito and Silva was left in the hands of the judges. Winning via split decision, Naito became the ONE Strawweight World Champion again.

Unsuccessfully defending the ONE Strawweight World Champion title, Silva now has professional MMA record to 7 wins and 2 losses. After beating Silva in their rematch, Naito improved his record to 13 wins and 1 loss.

Naito made his ONE Championship debut on May 27, 2016 at “ONE: Kingdom of Champions” where he submitted Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke via rear-naked choke. On October 7, 2016, Naito defeated Joshua “The Passion” Pacio at “ONE: State of Warriors” also via rear-naked choke submission.

On the other hand, Silva made his ONE Championship debut on February 11, 2012 at “ONE: Battle of Heroes” where he lost to Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio via unanimous decision. After five years, Eustaquio became the Interim ONE Flyweight World Champion.

After losing to Eustaquio, Silva went on a winning streak. The Brazilian fighter submitted Rene Catalan via armbar at “ONE: Kings and Champions” on April 5, 2014 and went on hiatus.

On December 11, 2015, Silva returned to the ONE Championship cage and submitted Ruel Catalan via kneebar at “ONE: Spirit of Champions.” On March 18, 2016, Silva submitted Robin Catalan via arm-triangle choke at “ONE: Union of Warriors.”

On February 10, 2017, Silva submitted Roy Doliguez via armbar at “ONE: Throne of Tigers.” On November 10, 2017, Silva submitted Hayato Suzuki via armbar at “ONE: Legends of the World.”

In the co-main event of “ONE: Grit and Glory,” Stefer Rahardian of Indonesia competed against Himanshu Kaushik of India in the strawweight division. The Indonesian contender maintained his undefeated record after submitting his Indian opponent via rear-naked choke at 2:21 of Round 1.

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