Chatri Sityodtong gives an update on the recruiting for the open weight Grand Prix

Chatri Sityodtong (left), Rodtang Jitmuangnon (right), photo by ONE Championship
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ONE Championship CEO Chatri Sityodtong is scouring the globe to fill out the lineup for the upcoming ONE Openweight Muay Thai World Grand Prix and he’s not just looking at his own existing roster.

During fight week of ONE Fight Night 6 a few weeks ago, Sityodtong announced that ONE Championship will host a sixteen-man, Openweight Muay Thai World Grand Prix later this year. Details have been slim since the announcement about names and dates for the massive tournament, but Sityodtong did provide a few more nuggets of information in a recent interview with the South China Morning Post.

Here’s what he had to say:

“So we’re obviously getting fan input from around the world…a bunch of athletes have come in from different organizations saying they wanna be part of it. We’re just gonna have to figure that out in the next few weeks so that we can make an announcement by March hopefully, and kick things off.”

The interview shed some light on Chatri Sityodtong’s timeline for the World Grand Prix, which, if the contestants are announced in March, puts the start around late spring or early summer.

The other point made in the interview is that Chatri Sityodtong will not only look to sign big names from the existing ONE Championship roster, but strikers from other organizations around the globe as well.

Many fans tried to put two and two together when they noticed Alistair Overeem Circleside at ONE Fight Night 6, speculating that the former GLORY champion could take part in the Grand Prix. Overeem has since denied any negotiations happening through his social media.

Still, the door is open for speculation for literally any fighter in any weight class to participate in the tournament.

Chatri Sityodtong clarifies the focus and intent of “ONE Friday Fights” cards in Bangkok

Chatri Sityodtong also recently launched a weekly partnership with Bangkok’s Lumpinee Boxing Stadium with the goal of hosting weekly fights in the arena.

Speaking in the same interview to the place that the events hold in ONE Championship’s ecosystem, Chatri Sityodtong said:

“12 fights and every week, just to clear up the confusion, there are no prelims. There is an international card which is called ONE Friday Fights which is focused on the international markets, our international broadcast partners, 179 countries around the world which will then be a miniature version of our big flagship stadium product, the ONE number of events like ONE 164 or whatever it is.”

Then speaking of the second half of the card, he said:

“Then the Thai card is focused on the Thai market still gonna be broadcast around the world but it’s gonna be broadcast on our digital platforms around the world but it’s gonna be very Thai focused to entertain the Thai market which is, obviously Channel 7 is broadcasting.”

The next scheduled card is ONE Friday Fights 2, taking place on Friday, January 27th from Lumpinee Boxing Stadium.

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