After about as successful of a debut imaginable former Glory veteran Jon Di Bella returns to action in the co-main event of ONE Fight Night 15. After capturing ONE Championship’s strawweight kickboxing title, he returns to action against Danial Williams. In an interview wirh Bloody Elbow, Di Bella talked his career beginnings, becoming champion and his upcoming fight with Williams.
Jon Di Bella’s humble beginnings before kickboxing
Jon Di Bella started fighting at a very, very young age. At only two years old he began learning to fight and by the time he was ten, he competed as an amateur for the first time.
”I started fighting at young age. I started training at 2 years old and my first amateur fight at 10 years old. My coach was a former three time ISKA kickboxing World Champion.”
Looking over his record, the reader will see that Di Bella has competed in boxing and kickboxing. He believes that cross training and competing makes him a better fighter overall.
“My dad made watch and train boxing at a young age. I believe boxing helps me a lot in kickboxing. It’s the base of fighting I believe and it’s very important to be skilled in boxing. I like to compete in both equally.”
Jon Di Bella and ONE kickboxing championship
As mentioned at the top, Jon Di Bella won the ONE Championship strawweight kickboxing title in his promotional debut. He took on China Permian Zhang and won that fight via decision. The company saw promise in him and gave him the huge opportunity and the 27-year-old seized the moment.
Di Bella said that becoming a World Champion was the culmination of, literally, a lifetime of work for him and was the most special moment of his career.
“My experience for me when I became World Champion was amazing. I worked all my life for that moment. Being a World Champion in ONE Championship is very hard to do, and not many people can say they became World Champion with ONE, especially with everyone in the league are the very best in the world.”
The Italian-Canadian champion knows the challenge that lies ahead of him in Danial Williams this weekend. Having shared the cage with the likes of Rodtang, Williams brings a torrid pace and Di Bella is expecting a tough fight.
”Danial brings many Challenges. He brings his exciting fighting style all the time, his power, his toughness and his warrior spirit. He has been in a fight of the year with Rodtang and he fought many other world champions at heavier weight classes, so I know he has a lot of experience.”
Speaking of Rodtang, Jon Di Bella chimed in on his most recent fight, a close decision to Superlek which saw the latter win.
”I think it was a great match,” says Di Bella. “Both of them really wanted to win. I think it could’ve been a draw. They will fight again, I hope. I would love to see it again.”
Thailand’s Lumpinee Stadium is traditionally a Thai boxing venue. ONE Championship has brought MMA and kickboxing to the iconic stadium. Do Bella is ecstatic about the opportunity to compete and represent his sport in the stadium.
“My fight with Danial will be in Lumpinee. I am very excited for this because I’m sure the energy in there is amazing. I fought at Madison Square Garden many times and the energy was electric. Now I am going on the other side of the world and fighting at Lumpinee Stadium is a dream come true. Having fought at MSG and now Lumpinee is very surreal to me, especially at a young age.”
One of ONE Championship’s biggest allures is the ability to cross compete in any of the sports they offer. We see fighters going between MMA, kickboxing and Muay Thai all the time. We’ve even been treated to a mixed rules bout with alternating Muay Thai MMA rounds. Di Bella thinks about this and would love the option to move over to a different sport, though the time has to be right.
”I always think about it,” he says. “Especially Muay Thai. For sure I wanna do a Muay Thai fight before I retire, but right now my goal is to be pound for pound in kickboxing.”
So why tune in? What about Jon Di Bella and Danial Williams’ fight at ONE Fight Night 15 will make fans excited? Di Bella says that he and Williams’ style is what makes fights exciting and fans will be lapping up what they have to offer.
“Fans should expect a war on October 6th. It will be a fan favorite fight. I believe it will be one of the best fights of the night and maybe the year.”
About the author