Ben Askren hasn’t had much luck since signing for ONE Championship. He’s seen one fight end in a controversial no contest, another abandoned at the last minute when his opponent missed weight, and a recent title defense postponed following the death of HM the King of Thailand.
The reigning ONE Championship welterweight king will hope to be busier in 2017 and Askren is set to make the second defense of his belt on April 21. The former welterweight champion will be fighting at the MOA Arena for the third time with his opponent’s identity as yet undisclosed.
Askren (15-0-0-1) has been out of action for just over a year. Meanwhile, Luis Santos has won back to back fights and, having proved he can make welterweight under ONE Championship’s new regulations, he will be hoping for a rematch with the champion.
The April 21 card will also feature the first title defense for newly minted lightweight champion Eduard Folayang. He was already a hero in the Philippines before capturing the crown from Shinya Aoki and will be guaranteed a raucous reception from the crowd in Manila.
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Folayang (17-5) is also without an opponent, but Ariel Sexton must surely be a contender to face him while the lightweight bout between Ev Ting and Kamal Shalorus next month could also have implications for the title picture.
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