Mixed Martial Arts
|Trần Ngọc Lượng of Việt Nam and Robson de Oliveira Soares of Brazil after weighing-in on April 21. Their 60kg Class B bout will take place on April 22 in HCM City's Rạch Miễu Gymnasium. Photos courtesy of MMA Việt Nam|
HÀ NỘI — Despite not being on the main card, an upcoming bout between two jiu-jitsu champions has drawn the attention of supporters at the MMA Lion Championship 5, set to take place at the Rạch Miễu Gymnasium on April 22.
Trần Ngọc Lượng, who is making his debut at the tournament, will take on Robson de Oliveira Soares, a seasoned veteran looking to improve on last year's result.
Soares, a three-time national champion of Brazil, has made a name for himself on the international stage with his impressive jiu-jitsu skills. The black-belt has fought in MMA events three times before, and was ousted in the semi-finals of last year's 56kg weight class.
Lượng has been the reigning 62kg champion of the national jiu jitsu championship for the past three years and has earned a bronze medal at the World Beach Jujitsu Cup and a silver medal at the Asian championship in 2022.
In addition to jiu-jitsu, Lượng has trained in various martial arts, including wushu's sanshou, vovinam, and other Vietnamese traditional martial arts genres.
"I have competed in many jiu-jitsu competitions at different levels," said Lượng. "I have won several medals for my team and Việt Nam. Jujitsu is a strong foundation for me when switching to MMA. I believe that experience from jujitsu will help me."
"In a pro-environment at Sài Gòn Sports Club, I have quality partners for sparring and coaches for suitable training plans. These elements helped me to be confident. However, I still have to be focused because everything is possible in sports, especially in fighting.
"Soares is a master of grappling, but I have prepared to resist him. I am confident of beating him with my rear-naked-choke," said Lượng, whose striking skills are also highly regarded.
The 30-year-old is aiming high; he hopes to be lifted into Class A of the competition and defeat defending champion Nguyễn Trần Duy Nhất.
"As a fighter, I always aim at the highest place," he said. "Nhất will be the top challenge that I have to overcome. I also want to beat him by his strong point of Muay Thai and traditional martial arts."
Lượng vs Soares is one of 12 Class B bouts organised for Saturday afternoon. It will be free for supporters to attend.
There will also be five Class A bouts. The main card will be between Phạm Ngọc Cảnh and Nguyễn Thành Đô in the men's 56kg category.
|Phạm Ngọc Cảnh and Nguyễn Thành Đô (left) will be a main card bout of the MMA Lion Championship event on April 22 in HCM City.|
Cảnh grabbed two knockout wins last year before being stopped by Phạm Văn Nam, who went on to be crowned champion.
Đô got a first-round submission victory in his first match last year, before his title run ended with an injury in the semi-finals.
The other fights are Bàn Văn Hoàng vs Lê Văn Thế Anh (men's 70kg), Trần Minh Nhựt vs Nguyễn Trung Hải (men's 60kg), Lê Văn Tuần vs Bùi Trường Sinh (men's 60kg), Vũ Văn Hải vs Nguyễn Nguyên Chương (men's 60kg) and Nguyễn Hoàng Thạch vs Nguyễn Phú Quý (men's 56kg).
The Class A bouts begin at 8pm. Tickets are available at the Việt Nam MMA Federation office, at Rạch Miễu Sports Training Centre, No 1 Hoa Phượng Street.
The fights will be shown live on VTVcab's channels ON Sports News and app ON and ON Plus. VNS