The script for So Mi Ong Luktupfah’s homecoming could not have been written any better.

The Burmese national grew up in Thailand, but always dreamt of returning to his homeland. After yearsof toiling in his martial arts career, he finally got a chance in January when he was the co-main event fight at WLC: Battlebones.

The event was held under the World Lethwei Championship (WLC) umbrella and provided him a global platform for the first time in his life. It was also his first trip back to Myanmar in more than 20 years. In front of more than 6,000 people, So Mi Ong displayed his full arsenal of strikes, knocking out his opponent with a devastating right kick to the gut in the second round. That fight catapulted him to stardom, trending high within the lethwei community.

So Mi Ong returns to action against Artur Te on Aug. 28 at WLC: Hideout Battle. Te is arguably the best striker at 54kg (the bantamweight equivalent in Lethwei), next to his opponent. The Korean-Uzbekistan star is a proven competitor, winning the MAX FC Kickboxing World Championship in South Korea. The winner of this battle is almost certain to be a candidate for the bantamweight World Lethwei Championship when it is introduced in 2021.

Unsurprisingly, So Mi Ong wants to firmly entrench himself as the frontrunner.

“I have proven I can hang with the best in the world and I want to prove I am the best athlete at
bantamweight,” So Mi Ong said to WLC. “World Lethwei Championship is a dream come true for me and I would like to become
the first bantamweight World Lethwei champion.”

WLC Hideout Battle is scheduled for Aug. 28. Current bouts include:

Main Event
Female Bantamweight 51 to 54kg (For the Inaugural Women’s Bantamweight World Lethwei Championship)
Souris Manfredi (France) VS Maisha Katz (Spain)

Co Main Event
Bantamweight 51 to 54kg
So Mi Ong Luktupfah (Myanmar) VS Artur Te (Uzbekistan)

Middleweight 71 to 75kg
Kristof Kirsch (Germany) VS Gligor Stojanov (Switzerland)

Bantamweight 51 to 54kg
Saw Phoe Khwar (Myanmar) VS Nabil Anane (Algeria)

Light Welterweight 60 to 63.5kg
Nakha (Myanmar) VS Sherzod Kabutov (Kyrgyzstan)

Welterweight 63.5 to 67kg
Tophik Abdullaev (Georgia) VS Omar Mahir (Belgium)

Featherweight 54 to 57kg
Nur Mohammad (Uzbekistan) VS Myagmasuren Borkhuu (Mongolia)

WLC: Hideout Battle will air on UFC Fight Pass, Canal+ and other broadcast partners beginning at 6:30 p.m. local time.

Fresh off homecoming debut, So Mi Ong aims for 54kg World Lethwei Championship