SINGAPORE - Mixed martial arts (MMA) organisation One Championship on Monday (April 27) morning announced its first official athlete rankings for select weight divisions across MMA, muay thai and kickboxing.
The ranking reflects the top five contenders in each weight division.
In MMA, the weight classes that now have rankings are the men's strawweight (up to 56.7kg), flyweight (61.2kg), bantamweight (65.8kg), featherweight (70.3kg), lightweight (77.1kg), and women's strawweight and atomweight (52.2kg) divisions.
In muay thai, the classes ranked are the men's strawweight, flyweight, bantamweight and featherweight, and women's atomweight divisions. One's kickboxing athletes in the same five weight classes - as well as those in the lightweight division - are also ranked.
The full rankings can be found on One's official website and on its mobile app, where it will also be updated after events.
An 18-person panel of sports media and industry experts, which includes former fighters Miesha Tate, Rich Franklin and Ann Osman, will determine any movement on the ranking after each One event, based on criteria such as wins and losses, most recent performances and quality of opponents.
With a ranking system finally in place for One, which was formed in 2011, there is greater clarity on how the organisation decides title opportunities to its fighters. It will also be easier for fans to understand the significance of fights between top contenders.
One chairman and chief executive officer Chatri Sityodtong said: "It is with great excitement that I announce the inaugural ONE Championship official rankings.
"The rankings will bring more clarity and transparency for our athletes as they chase their dreams for a world championship title.
"Fans can also follow their favorite athletes and their journeys more closely as they climb or fall in the rankings."
ONE Independent Rankings Panel:
Tom Taylor (BJPenn.com)
Stewart Fulton (MMA in Japan)
Nicolas Atkin (South China Morning Post)
Ian Shutts (Lowkick MMA)
Santino Honasan (ABS-CBN)
JM Siasat (GMA Network)
Manabu Takashima (MMA Planet)
Yuji Kitano (Abema TV Japan)
James Goyder (AsianMMA.com
Marcelo Alonso (Combate)
Sazali Abdul Aziz (The Straits Times)
Worapath Arunpakdee (Thairath TV)
Poptorn Roongsamai (Champ Magazine)
Wanlop Sawasdee (MGR Online)
Adam Kayoom (Former Athlete)
Ann Osman (Former Athlete)
Rich Franklin (Former Athlete)
Miesha Tate (Former Athlete)
Correction note: One Championship has clarified that Marcelo Alonso is with Combate.