RITU PHOGAT PICKED UP her second win in professional MMA in dominant fashion, beating Wu Chiao Chen by unanimous decision at Singapore in ONE Championship's 'King of the Jungle' event.
Wu, a Mixed Martial Artist from Chinese Taipei who came in with a pro record of 2 wins and 1 loss, was making her promotional debut with ONE in this event. She started out the bout with a short striking exchange but after the initial few moments of feeling-out, Ritu Phogat got through with a straight right hand. Emboldened, Ritu landed back to back jabs as Wu tried to fire back with an overhand left. But before she could do much, Ritu had used a combination to set up a double leg takedown attempt.
Once the fight went to the ground, the Indian wrestler immediately proved to be the dominant one. She took the top position and mounted Wu, who held onto Ritu with a tight guard to limit damage from ground and pound. Towards the end of the first round Wu managed to get the fight almost back on the feet but spent a lot of energy in doing so; Ritu dropped some stinging jabs on the increasingly exhausted Wu before the round ended.
In the second round, Ritu came out swinging, and immediately took Wu down. Her plan was to gain side control and finish Wu with ground-and-pound. But Wu, who has significant experience in grappling right from her amateur MMA career, held onto Ritu and used her legs to maintain a safe position. Still, Ritu kept pressure on her from the top, constantly shifting and dropping strikes whenever possible. Before the second round was over, Wu once again managed to get back up but Ritu kept her pinned to the cage and landed some heavy knees.
The third round, too, saw a repeat of what happened in the first two rounds. Ritu immediately landed a takedown and in the initial seconds stung Wu with elbows from side control. But Wu was able to pull Ritu into her guard and stay relatively safe for the rest of the round. However, at no point she was able to improve her position or gain control of the fight. As the bout ended, there was little doubt who would get the nod from the judges; and without any surprise, Ritu Phogat was declared the winner by unanimous decision.
Watch Ritu Phogat's fight, and the rest of the 'lead card' of ONE Championship: King of the Jungle right here courtesy the promotion's official YouTube channel.
With this win, Ritu has progressed to 2-0 in her professional MMA career; the first one coming against Nam Hee Kim in China back in November.
Speaking after the victory, Ritu said,
"I feel confident... I feel good, and especially thank my Evolve family, my coach, my country who watched me live today. Thank you for your love and support... please keep giving me your love and support. This is just the second step in my journey. My road is long, but I promise you I will bring the world championship title back to India."
While her performance was as dominant as it could be, Ritu stuck to her strong points of takedowns and ground-and-pound. The time spent in the cage was valuable experience for her but it did not reveal any newer facets to her game; which suggests that she needs to be tried out against stronger opponents before being considered for a title shot.