“This is a good fight for him” - Bantamweight MMA king Fabricio Andrade expects big things from Artem Belakh at ONE Fight Night 18

Fabricio Andrade (left) and Artem Belakh (right).
Fabricio Andrade (left) and Artem Belakh (right).

Fabricio Andrade may be in Brazil enjoying his downtime, but he’s also keeping a close eye on the division he’s reigning over.

The reigning ONE bantamweight MMA world champion has a keen interest in the upcoming matchup between Artem Belakh and Enkh-Orgil Baatarkhuu for ONE Fight Night 18.

The bantamweight MMA showdown goes down this Friday at the historic Lumpinee Boxing Stadium.

In an interview with ONE Championship, Andrade said the matchup against Baatarkhuu will be a great opportunity for Belakh to show off his complete arsenal.

Fabricio Andrade said:

“I believe this is a very good fight for Artem Belakh. Even though he is coming off a defeat and also recovering from an injury, I think this is a good fight for him. Enkh-Orgil is no longer at his best. Even though he’s coming off good victories, he’s older, and I don’t think he’s that dangerous.”

Andrade, 26, believes Baatarkhuu’s age will play a factor in the match against the 27-year-old Belakh.

Baatarkhuu, 35, is a perfect 3-0 in ONE Championship, with wins over Adonis Sevilleno, Rockie Bactol, and Jhanlo Sangiao. Belakh, meanwhile, will try to avenge his loss to Kwon Won Il from ONE Fight Night 11 when he faces the Mongolian veteran in Bangkok.

This pivotal bantamweight MMA showdown, as well as the entire ONE Fight Night 18 card, is available live and for free to all Prime Video subscribers in North America.

Fabricio Andrade admits dealing with several injuries in 2023

Fabricio Andrade is one of the most exciting fighters in ONE Championship, and his aggressive style propelled him to ONE Championship gold at the start of 2023.

‘Wonder Boy’ capitalized on his thrilling fight style to knock John Lineker out for the vacant ONE bantamweight MMA world title ONE Fight Night 7. The Brazilian star, however, wasn’t in his best shape in 2023.

In an interview with Sportskeeda MMA, Andrade said he was nursing multiple injuries in the past year.:

"Yes, now I’m focused on recovering from some injuries that I have. I have been dealing with multiple injuries on the left side of my shoulder, arm, and neck.”

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Edited by Harvey Leonard