Josh Tonna Says Bout With Sam-A Gaiyanghadao Will Come Down to Who Wants it More

Former ISKA K-1 World Champion Josh “Timebomb” Tonna of Australia is about to step into the most significant bout of his career thus far. The 32-year-old striker from Canberra will challenge for the ONE World Title, and will look to dethrone a dominant two-sport titleholder and legend.

Tonna is set to face reigning ONE Strawweight Muay Thai and Kickboxing World Champion Sam-A Gaiyanghadao of Thailand in a five-round showdown for the Thai warrior’s Muay Thai title. 

The bout will take place as the main event of ONE: REIGN OF DYNASTIES, scheduled for Friday, 9 October, live from Singapore.

Similar to what the NBA has done in Orlando, FL for the 2020 NBA Playoffs, ONE Championship has put together a stringent set of protocols to ensure the health and safety of its athletes and staff in it’s own ‘Singapore bubble.’

Tonna feels he has what it takes to cause a major upset, and leave the arena with ONE Championship gold wrapped around his waist.

“My mindset is strong, and I have been preparing for over a year for this bout. My pressure and ability to fight stronger and pick up the pace in the later rounds is my edge. He is just a man, and he is no stronger than I am. I am a fighter with lots of heart and strength also. We will see who is the stronger man on the night,” said Tonna.

“This is going to be ‘Fight of the Year’ and you will have a new champion.”

After competing across the globe in Australia, England, Thailand, Japan, Hong Kong, and Malaysia, racking up more than 30 professional victories, capturing the ISKA K-1 World Championship and a WMC Intercontinental Muay Thai Championship in the process, Tonna joined ONE Super Series in 2018.

Since then, he’s put together some amazing performances in the ONE Championship ring. Most recently, Tonna defeated five-time Muay Thai World Champion Andy Howson by knockout, earning him his spot right next to Sam-A.

“Beating Andy [Howson] gave me a lot of confidence. It shows that I should not be taken lightly. In one of Sam-A’s interviews, he thought that Andy would be his most dangerous opponent. Now I feel I am his biggest threat,” said Tonna.

“Sam-A has a lot of experience and has great reflexes and speed, on top of skill. He is a tremendous athlete and great role model for aspiring fighters. I have a lot of respect for him. He doesn’t do well with pressure, as seen in the Haggerty bout, and I think that is going to be what gets me over the line.”

ONE Championship returns for its next big blockbuster with ONE: REIGN OF DYNASTIES, scheduled for Friday, 9 October, and once again, the world’s greatest martial artists are ready to take the stage and showcase their incredible skills in the ONE Circle. The card also features a slew of compelling mixed martial arts and ONE Super Series contests.

Tonna is looking forward to showcasing his improved skills, particularly his mental capacity and championship mindset, heading into the most important test of his career.

“I think the most specific improvement has been with my mind. Learning to overcome adversity has helped me mentally. I have prepared as normal with each fight, but as an athlete and martial artist, I am coming in with a better mindset,” said Tonna.

“Pressure, teeps, and the will to win is what will get me over the line. It won’t be easy, but I’m going to win because I want it more than he does. Competing in ONE Super Series has helped me grow as an athlete, boosted my profile, and now I have had great opportunities challenging myself against champions and great fighters from all over the world. I am very grateful to be involved in this organization.”

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