INDIAN CANADIAN HEAVYWEIGHT FIGHTER Arjan Singh Bhullar has finally gotten what he's been chasing for over a year now - a shot at the ONE Championship Heavyweight title.
The five round title bout under Mixed Martial Arts rules will take place on 29th of May 2020, at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines. The event is being billed under the title 'Infinity 2.'
Arjan Singh Bhullar, a former Olympic wrestler who won a gold medal for Canada at the Commonwealth Games, has been active in professional MMA since 2014; around the same time when Brandon Vera left the UFC and joined ONE Championship. He has amassed a record of 10 wins and just 1 loss, with 3 victories in the UFC before he joined ONE Championship last year.
Brandon Vera, who has 16 wins and 8 losses in his career, has been averaging around one fight per year since he joined ONE. In 2015, he knocked out Paul Cheng to win the inaugural ONE Heavyweight Championship and has defended it twice since then; knocking out Hideki Sekine and Mauro Cerilli to solidify his position as the champion.
Last year, Brandon fought the Light Heavyweight champ Aung La N Sang in an attempt to add a second belt to his inventory. But it ended in him getting stopped in the second round. On the same day, Arjan made his ONE debut; earning a victory over Mauro Cerilli, the same fighter whom Brandon defeated in his last title defence; setting both fighters up for an inevitable confrontation.
Arjan, who has been vocal about his desire to be the champion, called out Brandon Vera right after he beat Cerilli. In an exclusive interview with TFG, he said,
"I want what Vera has, I want to be a world champion. I need that belt to do what I want for India, the Indian people, what he did for the Philipino people. Whether that's next or not, that remains to be seen. It's up to my coaches. We're going to take it one step at a time."
Going up against a veteran like Brandon Vera is potentially going to be the toughest fight in Arjan's career so far. A victory, however, offers the opportunity to go down in history as the first world champion of Indian origin in a major global promotion; a potential path-breaking moment for Indian MMA.