New Delhi: Arjan Bhullar on Saturday defeated Brandon Vera in the second round of a five round contest of the Singapore-based One Championship to become the first Indian origin fighter to win a world title in a top-level MMA promotion.
With the historical victory, the 34-year-old Indian star ended the Filipino-American’s five-and-a-half-year World title reign and became just the second ONE Heavyweight World Champion.
Bhullar completely dominated in the second round of the fight.
‘It’s the first time in my entire career that I felt gassed in the first round. I’m in shape, we’ve been training, we’ve been working with the best people in the world. This is new for me,’ Vera said in the postmatch interview.
Bhullar has his ancestry to Billi Bhullar village near Jalandhar in Punjab. A former wrestler, Bhullar had won the Commonwealth games gold medal in 120kg freestyle wrestling in New Delhi in 2010.
At the 2012 London Olympics, he became the first Indian-origin freestyle wrestler to represent Canada at the Olympics Games.
After his wrestling career, when he won his UFC debut against Luis Enrigue Barbosa de Oliveira in UFC 215, he had become the first Indian origin fighter to win a UFC fight.