Ben Askren has dominated the ONE Championship welterweight division since he made his debut in 2014 and he will look to notch up his third official title defence in September in Shanghai, China.
Sources close to MMAUNO.com have revealed that Askren (16-0) will defend his title against Swedish fighter, Zebaztian Kadestam (9-3) on September 2.
Kadestam shocked the world last May when he defeated Askren’s longtime rival Luis Santos via KO after he laid in some vicious knees to the head of the Brazilian to put him out cold on the mat.
— MMAnytt.se (@mmanytt) May 30, 2017
It was a result that few would’ve predicted, but the Swede now gets the opportunity to make an even bigger name for himself by beating Askren who is still undefeated in MMA.
Kadestam fights out of the Pancrase Gym Sweden and have gone 3-2 in his last five fights. His win over Santos was preceded by wins over Glenn Sparv and Han Seul Kim, but it’s not all been plain sailing for Kadestam and in between those wins he’s dropped a decision to Norwegian Hakon Foss and a loss to Finnish fighter, Juho Valamaa.
The Swede will be taking a huge step up in competition when he faces Askren, but opportunity knocks and a win would put his name out there on the world stage.
Askren, however, will have other ideas. His recent wins in ONE have been easy money for the former Bellator welterweight champion and his total domination of Agilan Thani last May was about as convincing as they come.
Once again, Askren will be the big favourite heading into the fight, but this is a pressure he will be well used to handling. No other fights have yet been announced by the promotion.