Pinay MMA fighter wins first ONE atomweight bout

Jenelyn Olsim of Team Lakay (on top) grapples with Vietnamese-American Bi Nguyen. (ONE)


Jenelyn Olsim of Team Lakay maintained her winning ways by pulling off a unanimous decision win against Vietnamese-American opponent Bi Nguyen in their atomweight mixed martial arts contest in ONE: Battleground III at the Singapore Indoor Stadium Friday, Aug. 27.

Olsim displayed once again her improved fighting style with combinations of power striking and consistent ground game in beating Nguyen.

Adding to her staple was her vicious counterpunches that negated the Viet-American’s aggressiveness.

After lots of ground game action in the first round, Olsim gained momentum and took the match by foot and unloaded a couple of knees before landing a solid right hook that sent Nguyen down the canvas.

Unfazed, Nguyen held on despite Olsim’s ground and pound punishment.

As if it was not yet enough, coach Mark Sangiao can be heard giving instructions that prompted the Team Lakay stalwart to hammer down some elbow strikes and body shots and never let go until the second-round marker.

Nguyen bounced back late in the third frame after charging strong to take the match down the ground. But the 24-year-old Olsim managed to stand up with a speedy left high kick before both warriors exchanged punches.

With a minute to go and action slowing down, Nguyen scored a huge takedown after a massive hip toss and followed up with last-second ground and pound action from the Viet-American veteran.

But it was too late to change the outcome of the match.

“Sa ngayon ‘yon ‘yong mga pinaghirapan natin since pandemic last year. ‘Yon ‘yong mga pinaghusayan nila, mga wrestling and ground game. So mag-expect pa sila kasi masisipag talaga sila,” said Sangiao.

The win also resulted in Olsim being cast into the historic all-female ONE: Empower card and the women’s atomweight world grand prix alternate bout against Thai-American Grace Cleveland.

The Team Lakay stalwart improved to five wins and two losses while Nguyen fell to a 6-7 record.

Olsim, for her part, said she will work more on her wrestling and conditioning after losing steam in the third round due to Nguyen’s aggressiveness on the ground.

“More conditioning. Talaganang napanood ko nung third round. More on wrestling din kasi medyo nakailang takedown siya sa laban nung pinapanood ko kanina talagang kitang napapagod ako sa third round,” said Olsim. “Pero ‘di naman siya sumusugod so tingin ko wala naman score ‘yon.”