Jarred Brooks earned his shot at the ONE Strawweight World Championship with another dominant victory in Singapore this past Friday, 22 April.
Brooks, the division’s #2-ranked contender, submitted top-ranked Bokang Masunyane with a rear-naked choke in the opening round of their Strawweight World Title eliminator at ONE 156: Eersel vs. Sadikovic. That pushed his MMA record to 19-2 (1 NC) and put him on a five-fight winning streak.
Though fans were curious to see how the battle of wrestlers would play out, it was ultimately a one-sided affair for the 28-year-old American star, who took control early and bided his time to get the submission finish.
While Brooks is satisfied with the win, he admits it was somewhat bittersweet because of his respect for Masunyane. The American said:
“I was pleased with my patience, having his back and staying there as long as I did. I wanted to wait until my arms got a little more slippery so I could get under his neck and finish it in a fashionable way.
“But hats off to Bokang. It sucks to beat somebody like that because he’s such a good dude and has such a good soul and heart. So, it kinda hurts me to beat somebody that really wanted it like I do.”
Despite getting the victory against the previously undefeated South African star in such a decisive manner, Brooks believes he has even more room to grow.
Ever since he signed with ONE Championship, “The Monkey God” has become fully dedicated to his MMA career. That means he can spend more time sharpening his skills and preparing for his fights, including his future ONE Strawweight World Title bout against reigning king Joshua Pacio.
“Personally, I feel like I have a lot to work on and I want to pursue getting better as well. I [was] only training twice a week, working out four days a week. Now, I have the opportunity to train almost every day, and you guys are going to see that against Joshua Pacio.
“I talk a lot, so I’m always going to have my haters, but the people that know the sport and know me definitely have that respect for me. There’s nobody in the world that can beat me. I believe that to the core of my heart, and that’s not trash talk.” (ONE FC)
(Photo credits to: One Championship)