Training out of Team Lakay in Baguio City, Philippines, Edward “The Ferocious” Kelly, 35, was one of the winners at “ONE: Roots of Honor.” It was his seventh victory in ONE Championship.
Featuring two kickboxing contests, two Muay Thai bouts and 11 mixed martial arts matches, “ONE: Roots of Honor” took place at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines on April 12, 2019. In the ninth bout of the evening, Kelly faced Sung Jong Lee, 33, of South Korea in an MMA match in the featherweight division with Kemp Cheng as the referee.
Kelly weathered a storm of submission attempts from Lee. The Team Lakay fighter Kelly fought off a wave of kneebar and heel hook attempts from his Korean opponent, who was in constant pursuit of grappling exchanges.
But in the second round, Kelly turned the tables as he fended off yet another submission attempt and pounded Lee out with piston-like punches for the stoppage win. Cheng put a stop to the featherweight bout after 2 minutes and 51 seconds in the second round when the Filipino fighter knocked out his Korean opponent via strikes.
Winning at “ONE: Roots of Honor” improved Kelly’s professional MMA record to 12 wins and 6 losses. On the other hand, Lee now has 4 wins and 5 losses.
“ONE: Roots of Honor” marked Kelly’s 13th ONE Championship outing. The opponents he defeated in the promotion prior to Lee were Jimmy “The Silencer” Yabo, 37, of the Philippines, Jordan “Showtime” Lucas, 25, of Australia, Vincent “Magnivincent” Latoel, 40, of the Netherlands, “The Terminator” Sunoto, 34, of Indonesia, Meas Meu, 29, of Cambodia and Christian “The Warrior” Lee, 20, of Singapore.
On September 8, 2018, Kelly defeated Christian via disqualification due to illegal suplex at “ONE: Beyond the Horizon” at the Shanghai Oriental Sports Center in Shanghai, China. But in their rematch at “ONE: Eternal Glory” at Istora Senayan in Jakarta, Indonesia on January 19, 2019, the Singaporean contender knocked out the Filipino fighter.
Including the Philippines and South Korea, 18 countries were represented at “ONE: Roots of Honor.” The other countries were Afghanistan, Australia, Brazil, China, Cuba, Indonesia, Japan, Mongolia, Morocco, the Netherlands, Romania, Serbia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and the United States.
Kelly’s fellow Team Lakay athlete Joshua “The Passion” Pacio, 23, became the new ONE Strawweight World Champion. In the co-main event of “ONE: Roots of Honor,” Pacio dethroned Yosuke “The Ninja” Saruta, 31, of Japan in a rematch.
Meanwhile, watch Kelly’s ring walkout at “ONE: Roots of Honor” here: