Superlek asserted his striking supremacy once more in a dominant win over Kickboxing legend Takeru. In the process, the “Kicking Machine” successfully defended his ONE Flyweight Kickboxing title. The win also solidified his status as perhaps the number one pound-for-pound striker on the planet today. The fight was the main event of the card that was held at the Ariake Arena in Tokyo, Japan.
Many observers predicted a much closer fight. Instead, the fight turned out to be an amazing display of Superlek’s superior skills. He showed that he is in his prime and deserves to be on the top pound-for-pound lists in kickboxing and Muay Thai. The fact that he did it in an emphatic fashion against a living legend makes it more impressive.
That’s not to say that Takeru was completely overwhelmed, though. The man is not known as a living legend in kickboxing for nothing. He showed glimpses of what we can do throughout the course of the 5-round battle. However, everything he did came up short because Superlek came into the fight with a fantastic game plan. The fact that he executed it perfectly is the icing on the cake.
Right from the get-go, Superlek gave a glimpse of what he had in store for Takeru. He quickly established a nice jab that was followed by low kicks. He did it to establish distance and prevent Takeru from getting close. The low kicks were also visibly bothering Takeru and that would continue throughout the fight.
Round 2 was more of the same. Superlek had a nice rhythm going with his jabs and low kicks. When he mixed in a few right crosses, push kicks, and step-in knees, it became apparent that he was winning the round yet again. On the other hand, Takeru was getting frustrated as he couldn’t connect with his signature punch combinations.
Takeru’s chance came in Round 3. The round started with more of the same, with Superlek throw jabs, leg kicks, step-in knees, and occasional crosses. In one of their exchanges, Takeru connected with a left kick to the liver. Superlek did not show any immediate sign of being hurt, though he stepped back a bit while continuing to throw. He backed up to the ropes and Takeru sensed an opportunity. He let go with a flurry of body punches that had Superlek covering up. Takeru followed it up with headshots to finish off the Kicking Machine. Superlek managed to recover though and fired back.
Superlek survived a close one in that round. He displayed his granite chin as well as his determination and will to win. In Round 4, he went back to his game plan. After all, it has worked for him all night long. He increased the step-in knees and paired them with timely push kicks. Again, it was clear that he won the round.
In the 5th and final round, it was obvious that Takeru needed a knockout to win. He continued to press on, trying to land his combos. His effort was still there, even if it was clear that he was hampered by the damage on his lead leg. The Japanese superstar kept on coming even as he ate strike after strike from Superlek.
After the smoke cleared, the victor was pretty obvious. Superlek got the nod and deservedly so. As his hand was raised in victory, Superlek was obviously happy and relieved at the same time. Takeru could not hold back his tears as he knew his efforts came up short in front of his home crowd. Still, it was a terrific battle that showed the awesome abilities of both fighters.
So what’s next for Superlek after successfully defending his kickboxing crown? A hotly-anticipated rematch with Rodtang is possible. Or he could engage in a rematch with Jonathan Haggerty, who is on a hot streak right now. Other great fights at both Muay Thai and kickboxing are also possibilities. But whatever path he takes and whoever he fights next, Superlek is sure to show off his superior skills that have made him the best striker today!