Representing Evolve MMA, Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki, 35, of Japan is one of the six hometown heroes competing at “ONE: A New Era.” In the main event, he will challenge reigning ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang, 35, of the Philippines in a rematch.
On March 28, 2019, Aoki and Folayang had their official face-off during the press conference at the Ritz Carlton in Tokyo, Japan. During the event, the Japanese challenger said, “I am thankful that ONE Championship is in my home country.”
“This is a great step forward for martial arts in Japan,” Aoki added. “I am laser focused for this coming match. I’ve trained very hard for my opponent. This Sunday night, I am confident I can achieve victory and become World Champion once again.”
“ONE: A New Era” is the first ever ONE Championship event to take place in Japan and will take place at the Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on March 31, 2019. On the fight card are 11 mixed martial arts bouts and four ONE Super Series matches, which include two kickboxing contests and two Muay Thai contests.
There will be three co-main events, which are all title bouts. In the first co-main event, Bibiano “The Flash” Fernandes, 38, of Brazil will challenge reigning ONE Bantamweight World Champion Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon, 31, of the Philippines in a trilogy fight.
In the second co-main event, Ken Hasegawa, 32, of Japan will challenge reigning ONE Middleweight and Light Heavyweight World Champion “The Burmese Python” Aung La N Sang, 33, of Myanmar in a rematch. They will compete for the Burmese fighter’s middleweight belt.
In the third co-main event, reigning ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion “The Unstoppable” Angela Lee, 22, of Singapore will compete for her second belt. She will challenge reigning ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion “The Panda” Xiong Jing Nan, 31, of China.
Also representing Japan at “ONE: A New Era” are Mei “V.V” Yamaguchi, 36, Hiroki Akimoto, 26, Senzo Ikeda, 36, Yuya “Little Piranha” Wakamatsu, 24, and Ken Hasegawa, 32. Meanwhile, here is a clip from one of Aoki’s previous ONE Championship bouts in the Philippines: