Jacob Smith will face Rodtang Jitmuangnon in the opening round of the ONE Muay Thai Flyweight Grand Prix, which kicks off at ONE 157 on May 20. ONE Championship recently shared a video of him hitting the pads.
Smith is getting ready for his debut in the promotion. In the video, his strikes look crisp while hitting the pads. The caption reads:
“Will Jacob Smith reach the top of the ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Grand Prix? The British star collides with Rodtang Jitmuangnon in the quarterfinals on 20 May at ONE 157!”
One of the comments came from ONE Muay Thai fighter and top contender Liam Harrison. He has sparred and trained alongside Smith and had this to say:
“Jacob is gonna give Rodtang a very hard night… we spar every day he’s a beast trust me.”
Smith is making his long awaited ONE Championship debut. He was originally scheduled to fight in ONE in 2020 and 2021 but both matches fell through. Now, he will be fighting in ONE Muay Thai against Rodtang.
Rodtang has been the longtime king of the flyweight division. He has defended his title against notable opponents such as Tagir Khalilov, Petchdam Petchyindee, and Jonathan Haggerty.
The Thai champion has a very impressive record with 267 career victories and is only 24 years old. In an interview with ONE, Rodtang showed a tremendous amount of respect for his upcoming opponent:
“I haven’t seen any of [Jacob Smith’s] weaknesses yet, from what I’ve studied. He is the most dangerous of the group.”
The two fighters are set to face off at ONE 157 on May 20.
Jacob Smith is the underdog against Rodtang Jitmuangnon
Smith fully understands his underdog status against the Thai great, and he’s okay with it. In a recent interview with VechtSport, the UK native explained that he is ready to shock the world:
“Obviously, he’s probably, on paper, the favorite. Yeah, I’m ready to shock the world, mate. Obviously, I’ve got nothing to lose… I think he’s probably going to underestimate me, which is obviously going to work in my favor, so hopefully, he does.”
In an interview with SCMP MMALiam Harrison stated that Smith is a tough fighter who shouldn’t be underestimated:
“Jacob Smith is from my gym, fighting Rodtang in the first round. Everyone has written Jacob off. No one’s giving him a second thought. But trust me, this kid can fight. He’s tough as f**k.”
Viewers can watch the Muay Thai clash at ONE 157 on May 20.