Filipino-Australian fighter Reece McLaren is determined to once again challenge for a world title in ONE Championship.
To do that, he needs to do what no man has done so far.
McLaren will look to be the first man to beat Aleksi Toivonen when they clash in the co-main event of ONE: Reign of Dynasties on October 9.
McLaren is a former ONE bantamweight title challenger, though he ultimately lost to longtime division king Bibiano Fernandes. A loss to Fernandes’ rival, Kevin Belingon, prompted McLaren to drop to the flyweight division where he hopes to be more successful.
At flyweight, McLaren has secured wins over Antapong Bunrad, Gianni Subba, and Tatsumitsu Wada but dropped close decisions to third-ranked Kairat Akhemetov and second-ranked Danny Kingad.
He did get back to winning ways by making short work of Gurdashan Mangat in December 2019, however, and a win over Toivonen could propel him back up the hill.
But it won’t be easy as the unbeaten Finn has a 100-percent finishing rate in all of his seven wins.
Toivonen announced his arrival in the ONE promotion with a submission win over Akhihiro Fujisawa, though his ascent in the division was halted by an ACL tear a few months later.
Now healthy, he looks to crash into the rankings with a solid performance over battle-tested veteran McLaren.
The matchup is a precursor to the main event, which is expected to be fireworks.
Capping off the night is a bout between two-sport World Champion Sam-A Gaiyanghadao, who defends his ONE Strawweight Muay Thai World Title, and top-ranked contender Josh Tonna.
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