It was an early night for Ramon “The Bicolano” Gonzales in his return to the ONE Championship Circle on Friday.
The Filipino karateka lost via first-round submission to Indonesian wrestling star Eko Roni Saputra at the previously recorded ONE: Inside The Matrix II.
From the get-go at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, Saputra wanted to keep the match on the ground, and while Gonzales fended off Saputra’s early advances, his defense didn’t last long.
The Evolve MMA star eventually got the match where he wanted it and quickly went to work. The moment Gonzales made a costly mistake, Saputra capitalized, took his back, and locked in a rear-naked choke.
The finish came with 52 seconds remaining in the first round, giving Saputra his fourth straight win in the Circle while handing Gonzales his second consecutive defeat.
Gonzales dropped to 4-4 while Saputra went up to 4-1.
In the main event, Kiamrian “Brazen” Abbasov successfully defended the ONE Welterweight World Title after stopping the erstwhile unbeaten James Nakashima in exciting fashion.
After overcoming the defense of Nakashima, Abbasov timed a well-placed right knee to the face near the end of the fourth round, which was the beginning of the end for the American.
Sensing the end was near, Abbasov followed up with big punches to get the TKO win.
In the co-main event, number-four ranked lightweight Timofey Nastyukhin outworked third-ranked lightweight Pieter “The Archangel” Buist to take a unanimous decision win.
With the victory, Nastyukhin earned a shot at reigning ONE Lightweight World Champion Christian “The Warrior” Lee sometime in the future.