After seven hard fought rounds together, former ONE Bantamweight World Champion John “Hands of Stone” Lineker is squashing the beef with new divisional king Fabricio “Wonder Boy” Andrade.
The Brazilians got embroiled in a heated rivalry over the ONE Bantamweight World Title that culminated with Andrade winning their rematch at ONE Fight Night 7 last Saturday, 25 February, inside Lumpinee Boxing Stadium.
Though it wasn’t the result he wanted, Lineker was gracious in the loss and credited his opponent’s toughness in the match.
“Unfortunately, I couldn’t get the belt back, but I’m proud of myself. I gave my all in this fight. Fabricio is a very tough guy. He took blows that other athletes couldn’t take,” he said.
To say that their two bouts were bangers would be a terrible understatement.
Their first match ended in anticlimactic fashion, but the two lived up to the hype as they battered each other from start to finish before an inadvertent knee halted the bout for good.
The second match was just as action packed as they went toe-to-toe once more for four rounds. Lineker was then deemed unable to continue entering the fifth round. His right eye was shut off due to the damage that Andrade dished in the first four rounds.
“I [threw] a lot of hard blows, knockout blows, that rocked [him]. That’s why I was very surprised with his absorption of blows. Fabricio is a tough guy, and I’m sure we would fight until one of us fell,” he said.
“He’s a guy who doesn’t give up, and I’m a guy who doesn’t give up, too. In the end, the winners of this war were the fans.”
Lineker would’ve fought until the very end, but his health is of paramount importance, and there was just no way the officials were going to let him continue.
“The doctors were cleaning the cut and trying to get the swelling down in my eye, but unfortunately, I couldn’t see anything anymore. My corner asked me if everything was ok, and I said I couldn’t see anything. They talked to the doctor, and the doctor said that it was not possible to continue the fight,” he said.
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