Brazilian phenom Fabricio Andrade was moments away from claiming the ONE bantamweight world championship in the main event of ONE on Prime Video 3 this past Friday, Oct. 21.
But an errant strike changed the course of the bout midway through the third round, as former divisional king John Lineker was left unable to continue, resulting in a no contest.
The surging star isn’t mincing words in the wake of the unfortunate result, and he believes Lineker could have continued the match.
In a video shared to Instagram, Andrade spoke about the accidental low blow and the damage it caused. His disappointment was palpable, but the 25-year-old put Lineker under the microscope with his words, claiming that his compatriot made a bigger deal of the strike than it was.
“The fight didn’t end as I expected. I was feeling very comfortable, very confident in the fight, and I made a mistake and hit him with a low blow. Honestly, I don’t think it was enough to make him stop the fight, but he knew in the third – I just dropped him with a body knee,” Andrade said.
“He took the easy way out. He brought out a broken cup. Nobody can guarantee that it was actually from the fight, because he was acting like he knew the cup was broken. Honestly, I don’t believe I broke the cup. Maybe it was already broken.”
“The guy has been running from me for a long time. He comes in here, doesn’t make weight, and now he gave up on the fight like that. It’s frustrating for me. I don’t believe he wants to face me again. If he wants a rematch, he can rematch me anytime.”
Andrade entered ONE on Prime Video 3 with tons of confidence, thanks to his perfect 5-0 slate inside the Circle, and he certainly showcased his dangerous arsenal throughout the bout. Lineker left the arena with an abundance of wear on his face while he walked out feeling fresh.
“Wonder Boy,” understandably, wants to go for the gold again as soon as possible, having missed out on capturing the coveted divisional crown by a hair – and he makes it clear that he’s ready to fight anyone anytime.
“You can see I’m fresh. I took no damage from this fight, but I want to be active. I want to fight as soon as possible. And I don’t think this guy wants a rematch with me, so maybe let’s put another guy for the title because he couldn’t even make weight, so now the title is vacated,” Andrade said.
“If he doesn’t want to fight, and I believe he doesn’t want [to] anymore, especially after I picked him apart like that, give me another guy. I just want to get my title. Everybody knows that I am the champion. I proved in this fight that me and Lineker are not on the same level.”
There has been no indication on what will happen next with the bantamweight strap. But given his performance on Friday night, Andrade’s claim to another world-title tilt would be difficult to deny.