Tiffany Teo made a triumphant debut in the atomweight division at ONE 161. Despite cutting 10 pounds from her usual fighting weight, 'No Chill' showed tremendous strength against a powerful wrestler in Ritu Phogat.
After beating a world champion wrestler by basically out-grappling her and submitting her inside one round, the former Singapore national boxing champion made a bold callout. Asked who she wants next, Teo told ONE commentator Mitch Chilson that it’s no other than atomweight queen Angela Lee.
This is quite a bold statement as Teo has just won her first fight in the division. That doesn't mean, however, that she couldn't give Lee problems inside the Circle. In her post-fight interview with ONE Championship, 'No Chill' reiterated her desire to fight 'Unstoppable' for the title:
"I’m open to fighting anyone, to be honest. But Angela is someone that I’ve always wanted. It’s the fight that I’ve been calling for since day one. I think it makes the most sense now that I’m fighting in both divisions now and one of the top contenders in both divisions. Other than that, I’m open to any fights that ONE Championship has to offer. After my fight with Ritu, I called out the whole division and I still stand by what I say, I’m ready to fight anyone."
Tiffany Teo has massively improved since her two failed title challenges against Lee's rival, ONE women's strawweight queen Xiong Jing Nan. Being that she has tremendous experience against the only woman to beat Lee twice, Teo might have an edge against the atomweight queen.
Tiffany Teo submits Ritu Phogat at ONE 161
In a magnificent showing of mixed martial arts skills, Tiffany Teo beat Ritu 'The Indian Tigress' Phogat via submission in the first round. After feeling each other out in the first minute, Phogat caught a kick by Teo and shot for a single-leg takedown. While she was able to ground 'No Chill' for a few seconds, the Singaporean fighter was able to get back up easily.
With her back against the cage and trapped inside the clinch with Phogat, Teo used a simple arm crank to reverse the position and take Phogat's back. From there, 'No Chill' relentlessly hunted for the sub until she got it with less than ten seconds left in the round. Impressive stuff.
In her post-fight interview, Tiffany Teo spoke about how she felt fighting in a new weight class:
“The first thing is the diet. I had to diet a lot to make this atomweight. Thankfully I had help from a professional nutritionist, he’s based in the US. John Sasson helped me a lot [in] making this weight at atomweight. A huge difference I noticed was my speed. I felt like I was a lot faster at a lower weight class compared to when I was fighting at strawweight.”
Teo concluded with:
“Interestingly, I didn’t feel like I lost much strength. One of my concerns about dropping down to atomweight was I might lose some of my strength at a lower weight class but I felt really great throughout the whole fight camp and didn’t lose much strength.”
Conventional speaking says that once you lose weight, you become lighter and faster but you might lose some muscle mass, thus losing power and strength. Tiffany Teo, however, apparently didn't have that problem. Judging by how she manhandled an accomplished wrestler, we tend to agree with her.