Moroccan kickboxing star Mohammed Boutasaa scored a deserved unanimous decision victory over Turkish opponent Furkan Karabag.
In a featherweight kickboxing battle of volume versus precision, it was Boutasaa who took his chances, employing a cautious defensive game and throwing accurate strikes that convinced all three judges to award him the victory at the iconic Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand.
In the first round, both fighters took a cautious approach to their game. A high kick from Karabag broke the stalemate, but Boutasaa quickly responded with a kick of his own.
While Boutasaa’s quick movements and push kicks kept the dangerous Turkish fighter in range, the Moroccan tried to wear down his opponent by following up his kicks with punching combinations. In the closing moments of the first round, Karabag stepped up and landed a right and a low kick.
The 25-year-old Turkish fighter carried his momentum into the second round. Karabag looked dangerous on the attack, landing a thunderous, well-timed body kick and several boxing combinations. Boutasaa showed resilience before launching several counterattacks, most notably a left knee to his opponent’s body.
Boutasaa showed composure in the third round as he remained calm throughout the exchanges. His quick movements and solid defence made it difficult for his opponent to break through. The 24-year-old Moroccan countered his opponent’s ineffective attacks with long-range kicks and jabs to turn the contest in his favour.
With the win, Boutasaa improves his overall professional record to 16-2. Most importantly, the talented Moroccan’s confidence-boosting victory gets him back on the winning track after two consecutive losses following his debut win. His ONE Championship record now stands at 2-2.
Meanwhile, Karabag’s overall professional record falls to 26-8, while his ONE record is now 1-2.
Joining Ilias Ennahachi, Mohammed Hanoun and Wail Karroumi, Boutasaa is one of four Moroccan fighters taking part in ONE Championship’s ONE Friday Fights series of weekly fight events in Bangkok.
ONE Friday Fights is ONE Championship’s weekly fight show featuring bouts in Muay Thai as well as other martial arts such as mixed martial arts and kickboxing. It starts every Friday at 13:30 GMT.