ONE Championship boss believes PH’s Denice Zamboanga beat South Korean opponent


Posted at Sep 05 2021 01:30 AM

Denice Zamboanga measuring her distance against Seo See Ham. Handout photo
Denice Zamboanga measuring her distance against Seo See Ham. Handout photo

In the eyes of ONE Championship top executive Chatri Sityodtong, Denice Zamboanga of the Philippines beat South Korea's Seo See Ham in the women's atomweight grand prix.

The judges, though, had the final say on the result and awarded Ham a contentious split decision victory over the Filipina grappler following a 3-round war.

"I thought Denice Zamboanga edged out Seo Hee Ham for the victory in a super close fight," Sityodtong said in his Facebook page.

Ham scored points with her superior striking, but Zamboanga brought her to deep waters with her ground game.

In the third round, Zamboanga exploded with a powerful takedown, but Ham battled right back on the feet to close out the fight.

Two of the judges favored Ham, who advanced to the next round of the grand prix. Whoever tops the competition gets the chance to challenge reigning champion Angela Lee.

"While I disagree with the judges on this one, I can understand why they scored the bout for Ham," said Sityodtong.

"It was a very close fight with Ham landing the cleaner, heavier punches with damage and Denice controlling the cage work, takedowns, and ground action." 

Sityodtong said Zamboanga may be out of the running for the grand prix crown, but this doesn't mean she won't get a shot to take on Lee.

"I definitely want to see Denice vs Angela for the world title," he said.

Meanwhile, Zamboanga said she is very much willing to face Ham in a rematch. "Absolutely," she said.

She added that, given another crack at the gritty Korean, she will go for a finish.

"If I could do it again, I know that I should finish her from the first round and try to submit her. I should not put the results at the hands of the judges," said Zamboanga.

"I'll be back in the Circle tomorrow."


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