ASEAN athletes and their favourite food

Timothy Wee Timothy Wee

ASEAN sporting heroes live to eat too, and FOX Sports Asia brings you the best of what is on their plate.

If there is one thing that we Asians cannot resist, it will have to be food.

In fact, you can say that we love our food as much as we love our sports!

So, we thought why not combine both for your viewing pleasure?

Therefore, we scoured our beloved Asian sporting heroes‘ social media channels to see what they are eating.

Joseph Schooling

Singapore national swimmer Joseph Schooling made history last year by becoming his country’s first Olympic gold medallist.

7 to go! Thanks for the insane support everyone 🙂 #SeaGames2015 #swimming #OneTeamSG 📷: @adrianseetho

A post shared by Joseph Schooling (@josephschooling) on

With swimming taking the 22-year-old around the world, he is not afraid to try the local cuisine. No matter how super-sized it is.

Everything's bigger in Croatia

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Based in Texas, Schooling, who recently won four Southeast Asian (SEA) Games golds, is well versed in the language of American waffles and ice cream.

Nom Nom

A post shared by Joseph Schooling (@josephschooling) on

Sam “Little Frog” Tharoth

A pioneering female MMA fighter from Cambodia; Sam “Little Frog” Tharoth is skilled in the local marital arts called Bokator.

She has a 4-2 fight record – with all her four victories coming via submissions.

The 27-year-old certainly is a fan of ice cream – particularly Turkish ice cream.

And she believes sharing (food) is caring; distributing local rice bowls comprising of rice, omelette and sausages for charity!

Matthew Davies

As the youngest captain that his football club has ever had, Malaysian Matthew Davies is a rising right-back who ply his trade with Pahang FA.

back to Kuantan after a coupla days in Phuket #sunfinallycameout 🌤

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Being half-Australian, he knows a thing or two about coffee.


A post shared by Matt Davies (@matttdavies) on

melbs we out here ☕️

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The Australian-born Malaysian footballer, and former Perth Glory academy product, is crazy about everything brunch and poached eggs.

Happy 21st to mi love, couldnt be prouder of you. Many more birthdays to come together ❤️🎈 @jennavivian_

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And some sweet ice cream and churros to finish a meal off.

icecream with the main man brendan gan before we're off to Indonesia tomorrow 🍦#boyswhobrunch

A post shared by Matt Davies (@matttdavies) on

Mmmmm Jenna

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But he can’t turn down his favourite local dessert – ice kacang!

Well earned favourite malaysian dessert after lastnights comeback #icekacang

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And the Asian in him just can’t turn down sipping on fresh fruit juice around Asia.

selamat hari raya from vietnam 🇻🇳 #coconutsandcommunism

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melaka melon 🍉

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Or tucking into some fried Japanese yakisoba.


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But he still falls back on trusty satay (meat skewers)!

when you get your malay wrong and order 50 satay sticks instead of 15 #ohmybahasa

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Michelle Sng

After clinching a gold at this year’s SEA Games, Singapore athlete Michelle Sng became her nation’s first female high jumper in 52 years to do so.

Clearly the 30-year-old misses local food when aboard and joins her national team mates often for dinners featuring curry and soy chicken wings!

Despite being away for the Chinese New Year, Sng couldn’t resist making her own yu sheng (raw fish salad)!

She also have a soft spot for Nutella…

I must confess, I love eating Nutella out of a jar. Thanks @nutellasea! #yournutella

A post shared by Michelle Sng (@michsng) on

Irfan Bachdim

Operating mainly as a forward and winger, Dutch-born Indonesian footballer Irfan Bachdim turns out for club Bali United.

Bebop and Me!! #TeamBachdim #Travel #Thailand #Phuket #BebopDrone #SriPanwa

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The 28-year-old former Ajax academy product, having had a stint with Consadole Sapporo, is no doubt a fan of Japanese food – particularly donburi (rice bowls).

Dinner time!! 🍣 #ConsadoleSapporo

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And sushi. Duh.

Sushi time with @shotasakaki !! #TeamMate #Shota7 #Nagoyakatei #ConsadoleSapporo

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A bona fide movie star; Bachdim is also a fan of Japanese ramen.

R A M E N 🍜 🎌

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And the Tendangan Dari Langit star wouldn’t say no to dim sum.


A post shared by Irfan Haarys Bachdim (@ibachdim) on

Angela Lee

Fighting for Evolve MMA gym, ONE Championship Women’s Atomweight champion Angela Lee is the youngest person to hold a MMA world title.

Moving to Hawaii when she was just eight, the 21-year-old has a firm grasp of the local food there.

She has no problems playing food guide to her “babe” – fellow Evolve MMA gym teammate Bruno Pucci.

And the foodie couple also enjoys eating as they travel.

Last night's candlelight dinner w/ my love 🕯❤️ #fonduefortwo

A post shared by Angela Lee (@angelaleemma) on

🍔+🍻+🍫 = ❤️ Burgers, Beers and Brigadeiro w/ my Italian Stallion 😘

A post shared by Angela Lee (@angelaleemma) on

But we are sure that Asian cuisine has a special place in her heart. Particularly Korean!

But when she is back in Singapore, she enjoys Mod-Sin cuisine like coconut salmon with cinnamon pumpkin at Smor.

But who can turn down our now-famous hawker fare? Not Lee of course.

And she falls back on old school local sweet treats to satisfy her sweet tooth.

Than Paing

Hailing from Myanmar, 21-year-old Chin United striker Than Paing is THE Burmese footballer to watch!

Paing, who scored the goal that sent his country to their first FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2014, loves his local noodles.

But he and his team mates just can’t resist some KFC fried chicken once in a while.

Or why not both?

Veronica Pereira

Despite her two SEA Games bronze medals, Singapore track star Veronica Pereira will have every reason to be upset at losing her 200m final SEA Games crown.

☀️🌴 Beach Day 🌴☀️ #SASSingUpIndo

A post shared by Veronica Shanti Pereira ☀️ (@v_shantipereira) on

But clearly even a 20-year-old sprinter need a cuppa to get going in the morning.

That is one huge mug ☕️

A post shared by Veronica Shanti Pereira ☀️ (@v_shantipereira) on


A post shared by Veronica Shanti Pereira ☀️ (@v_shantipereira) on

Like in most other Asian countries, nothing hits the spot like a steamboat dinner.

Steamboat goodness at home for mama's bday!

A post shared by Veronica Shanti Pereira ☀️ (@v_shantipereira) on

And she adores her local wanton dumpling noodles.

Finally some Fei Fei 😋 #shanandchui

A post shared by Veronica Shanti Pereira ☀️ (@v_shantipereira) on

Pereira, ever the foodie, is open to trying other Asian cuisines on her travels.


A post shared by Veronica Shanti Pereira ☀️ (@v_shantipereira) on

When in Bangkok…

What's BKK without some After You 💁🏾 #snctravels #shanandchui

A post shared by Veronica Shanti Pereira ☀️ (@v_shantipereira) on

She might be a coffee type of girl, but she does tea as well – teh botol!

Thierry Chantha Bin

Born in Paris to Cambodian parents, Thierry Chantha Bin is a footballer who is on loan at Electricite du Cambodge, from parent Thai League 2 club Krabi FC.

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The 26-year-old midfielder, who scored on his national team debut against Macau, loves going on food outings with his colleagues.

Happy Chinese new year everybody ❤🐷❤

A post shared by Thierry Chantha Bin (@thierrychanthabin) on

Whether be it for Thai food with his Krabi FC team mates…

After training with the team mate 🐷✌🙏

A post shared by Thierry Chantha Bin (@thierrychanthabin) on

Birthday party with the team ❤👑🐷 #krabi #happy #team #birthday #cambodia #Thailand

A post shared by Thierry Chantha Bin (@thierrychanthabin) on

Or Cambodian food with his national team mates.

#TEAM #SELFIE 🙋⚽💪🍴 #lunch #myanmar #cambodia #football #aseanfootballfederation #cambodiafc #khmer #phnompenh

A post shared by Thierry Chantha Bin (@thierrychanthabin) on

It seems to be his time-honored tradition that stretches back to his Phnom Penh Crown days.

Lunch with teammates today! ⚽🍴💪 #cambodia #football #cambodiafc #phnompenh #kampuchea #khmerfrench #love

A post shared by Thierry Chantha Bin (@thierrychanthabin) on

In any case, he wouldn’t say no to comfort Cambodian food.

Healthy fix before heading to training with the national team! ⚽💪🍳 #cambodia #football #aminoacids #helixbcaa protein_bkk1

A post shared by Thierry Chantha Bin (@thierrychanthabin) on

yes 😄😄😄😄😄

A post shared by Thierry Chantha Bin (@thierrychanthabin) on

He loves his fresh fruit juices…

was so hot today!!! @juicymercy saving my life 😥⚽💪

A post shared by Thierry Chantha Bin (@thierrychanthabin) on

Thank you @juicymercy for the perfect boost before the match tonight! 🤗⚽💪 #cambodia #football

A post shared by Thierry Chantha Bin (@thierrychanthabin) on

And absolutely adores poutine.

Soh Rui Yong

As the most prominent Singapore marathoner, Soh Rui Yong is the pride and joy of Team Singapore’s track and field team.

The 27-year-old two-time SEA Games gold medallist is partial to the local breakfast staple fried carrot cake!

Clearly, he likes it black (dark soy sauced).

Didn't try to pay with credit card this time. ✅ #progress #singaporebreakfast

A post shared by Soh Rui Yong (@runsohfast) on

Despite being based in the US, the man is Singaporean through and through, and clearly appreciates his cai png (mixed dish rice).

Clearly, you can take the Singaporean out of Singapore.

But you can’t take the bak chor mee (minced meat noodles) out of the Singaporean.

@mrspeedtastic 's first time at Old Airport Rd. #Legend #SingaporeAthletics

A post shared by Soh Rui Yong (@runsohfast) on

The current national 10000m national record holder also have a soft spot for Peranakan (Straits Chinese) food.

The Brat, the Model Student, and the Boss. #RafflesCrossCountry

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And though he is training to become Singapore’s first Olympic marathoner, he cannot resist the local supper fare, roti prata (fried Indian shortbread).

Tristan Somachai Do

Turning out for Muangthong United, Thai-French footballer Tristan Somachai Do was actually eligible to play for three national teams (Thailand, Vietnam and France).

Let's face the new week 😏 Cr. @oad.ari

A post shared by Tristan Do (@tristando19) on

Being French on his mother’s side, the 24-year-old right-back is familiar with French bistro fare.

Dinner with the cousins at "L'Endroit" 👫👫🍽 #france #holidays #paris #family #food ☺️

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As well as homely French Christmas treats.

Santa brought me the best gift ever this year, family ☺️🙏🏻 Merci Pere Noel ❤️

A post shared by Tristan Do (@tristando19) on

Like all good French folks, he knows his way in the kitchen.

Finding food for lunch 🤔❄️😌 Cr. #bonappetit #kissfromfrance 😚

A post shared by Tristan Do (@tristando19) on

Luong Xuan Truong

As the first Vietnamese to play in the K-League Classic, it should be no surprise to learn that footballer Luong Xuan Truong is also the national side captain!

In his spare time, the 22-year-old midfielder, who is currently on loan at Gangwon FC, kicks back with his friends over a traditional Vietnamese BBQ – complete with salad and cold ones.

Quá tuyệt vời cho một chuyến đi 🙌🏻

A post shared by Híp Híp (@truongplayboy) on

Lạnh quá lạnh quá 😁

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And the former Arsenal JMG Academy product wouldn’t turn down some freshly braised chicken feet.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Yeaaaaaaaaaar 🎅🎄🎊

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Like all his countrymen, he enjoys a good cuppa. Anywhere in the world.

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And the legendary local street treats as well.


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Not forgetting the iconic pho.

"Anh xin lỗi mà, sao em lại đá anh chứ ??? Anh cạo cả đầu để xin lỗi em luôn này" 😓

A post shared by Híp Híp (@truongplayboy) on

Or just a hearty local soup like how mama would make it.

Đói quáaaaaa 😱 Thèm bánh tômmmmmmm 😓

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Though known for vision, passing and free-kick abilities, Luong probably also knows how to cook as well as his mama.

Hè về là phải hành Mẹ và Chị gái làm bánh trôi 🙏🙏🙏 Ngon dã mannnnn ☺️☺️☺️

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But his Korean stint has given him a new appreciation for the food.

Seems like I got the ocean in this Ramen 🍜

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Mọi người ăn tối ngon miệng nhé ^^ #Songdo

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Phil Younghusband

Easily the most recognisable footballer in the Philippines, Phil Younghusband is a English-born Filipino forward with Davao Aguilas FC.

Splashing the cash, the 30-year-old former Chelsea trainee brought his Filipino-Spanish model girlfriend to the world class restaurant Indigo!

And with family, the right-footed footballer opts for good old English comfort food.

Great first night back in England. Cottage Pie, Tea & Biscuits with my 2nd family #staines #hometown #family #friends

A post shared by Phil Younghusband (@philyounghusband10) on

Sooooo busog! Cup of tea and biscwuit for dessert. Sarap! #taglish #britnoy #pinglish #proudpinoy

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But the self-professed Titanic movie fan knows how to indulge his Filipino tastebuds as well.

Just arrived here in Kuya J Pampanga. Looking forward to the food! 😋

A post shared by Phil Younghusband (@philyounghusband10) on

Look at what Kuya J prepared for everyone! Visit him now in SM City Bacolod! @jimboyh007 @kuyajresto #kuyaj #smbacolod

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You don't wanna miss Kuya's special cooking. Visit him now in SM City Bacolod! @jimboyh007 @kuyajresto #kuyaj #smbacolod

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Grilled Scallops at Kuya J w/ Kuya @jimboyh007! Visit Kuya J SM City Bacolod right now & try it! @KuyaJResto #KuyaJ #SMCityBacolod

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FOX Sports Asia Features: The Justice League (of Sports)

Timothy Wee Timothy Wee

Just as the Justice League can be considered as the United Nations of superheroes, we scour the globe to bring you the best team of athletes that the world has ever seen.

Not all heroes wear capes or their underwear on the outside.

In fact, anyone who excel in their chosen field and inspire others can be considered a hero.

With that in mind, we decided to celebrate our own personal sporting heroes and create FOX Sports Asia’s own Justice League!

(Sporting) Heroes Unite!

Pep Guardiola is Batman/Bruce Wayne


As the unofficial leader of the pack, Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is more than qualified to be world’s greatest detective, the Batman.

Having led City to the top of the EPL table this season, Guardiola has proven his leadership skills as well as his analytical mind – masterminding victories over Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal.


And we know already that the Spanish manager was the “Dark Knight” of the Barcelona side in the early 90s’. The ex-Barcelona man was a no-nonsense defensive midfielder who won six La Liga titles.

Sam “Little Frog” Tharoth is Wonder Woman/Diana Prince


While she is not from the exotic land of Themyscira, Cambodia’s leading female MMA fighter Sam “Little Frog” Tharoth is every bit the ground breaking hero that Wonder Woman is.

Earning her nickname due to her fondness for the popular local snack, the submission specialist is no slouch in the ring having registered four wins and smashing age-old female stereotypes in a patriarchal country.

Besides MMA, the 27-year-old is also an actress – making her a master of disguise just like Diana.

Christian Coleman is The Flash/Barry Allen


In keeping with the youthful tone of the Flash, we decided to skip naming now-retired Usain Bolt in place for rising American sprinter Christian Coleman.

The 21-year-old American recently beat Bolt at the IAAF World Championship 2017 – winning the 100-metre in 9.94 seconds for the silver. His personal 100-metre best of 9.82 seconds came in the NCAA Track and Field Championship this year.

And though he isn’t running fast enough to time travel like the Flash, the fourth-fastest American of all time seems to be well on the path to greatness!

Joseph Schooling is Aquaman/Arthur Curry


Another up-and-coming star; Singaporean swimmer Joseph Schooling has the world in his hands after winning his country’s maiden Olympic gold medal and beating idol Michael “Flying Fish” Phelps in the process.

Much like the fabled Prince of Atlantis, Aquaman, the 22-year-old Schooling shows great potential in the water; having amassed six golds at this year’s Southeast Asia (SEA) Games and broke four records along the way.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic is Cyborg/Victor Stone


Seemingly forever young, Manchester United striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic is every bit as ageless as the cybernetic hero Cyborg.

Ever at 36 years of age, the Swedish footballer shows no signs of slowing down – using his well-oiled joints to score a staggering 28 goals last season.

The 2013 FIFA Puskas Goal of the Year winner also boast a genius-like level of intelligence on the pitch – scoring a delicious back heel against Italy at Euro 2004.

Special appearance by Eddie “The Beast” Hall as Superman/Clark Kent

While he might not be a man of steel, British strongman Eddie Hall is the closest thing that we have to Superman.

Went to see my pal Lewis in Birmingham children's hospital today, what an absolute pleasure and what a soldier he is… Going through what only can be described as hell and the most awesome, handsome, Whitty little lad Iv ever met not phased at all. Told him he's got to eat lots of food to get big and strong! Check out his journey and say a prayer for Lewis and his family. Iv got two kids and I couldn't imagine what this situation would do to me but the parents are being very brave and positive about everything. And the best thing I heard was that the support they're getting has been amazing…. Look forward to seeing Lewis at the Giants live world final VIP style in September. Thank you so much guys click on the link to check out his page. Lewis loves checking his FB page so please share and like the page and make team Lewis the biggest and best team there is. Thank you! Big Love ❤️ Team Beast and Team Lewis @proteindynamix @xploape @strengthasylum @alphadesignsuk @bobosbeard @blakemans @wrightspies @pulseworldwide @getnewage @sbdapparel @giantslive #alphadesign #wrightspies #strengthasylum #giants #giantslive #proteindynamix #bobosbeardoil #beast #beard #deadlift #deadlifts #boss #bosslife #hulk #strong #strongman #strongmantraining #pulse #getnewage #performance #mouthguard #SBD #supports #SBDapparel

A post shared by Eddie hall (@eddie_hall_strong) on

The 2017 World’s Strongest Man winner is the only man alive able to deadlift 500kg – which is the current world record.

Although there is no chance of Hall possessing laser vision, The Beast can still pulverise enemies with his two huge guns – two bulging biceps that also gained him the world record for axle press (216kg).

Top 10 richest sportswomen of 2017

Timothy Wee Timothy Wee

FOX Sports Asia puts together the ten richest sportswomen for 2017.

In a year where the top 100 sports athletes earned a combined US$3.1 billion, it is clear that sports mean big money.

While beloved Real Madrid and Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo ran away with US$93 million for himself, there was still plenty of cash to go around.

But, it isn’t just the men that are seated at the money table. The ladies, with the aid of lucrative corporate partnerships, are no slouch as well.

So who are these big sportswomen ballers? Let’s find out who made it rain green all throughout the year…

10. Simona Halep

Total Earnings: US$6.2 million

Prize Money: US$4.7 million

Despite losing her second French Open final, world number one Simona Halep is still the tenth highest-earning female athlete for the year.

Not only did she spend the most consecutive weeks in the top ten rankings, she also managed to sign a deal with Mercedes-Benz Romania in 2017.

9. Eugenie Bouchard

Total Earnings: US$7.1 million

Prize Money: US$0.6 million

Although she spent much of 2017 languishing in the 70s on the women ranking, Eugenie Bouchard is still easily one of the most marketable tennis player. She appeared in this year Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue.

💚💚💚 @si_swimsuit

A post shared by Genie Bouchard (@geniebouchard) on

The 23-year-old Canadian added Colgate to her ever-growing list of sponsors, which includes Nike, Coca-Cola, Rogers and Aviva.

8. Agnieszka Radwanska

Total Earnings: US$ 7.3 million

Prize Money: US$3.3 million

Affectionately nicknamed “The Professor”, Polish tennis ace Agnieszka Radwanska managed to secure new deals with Srixon, Polish oil firm Lotos and cosmetic company Inglot despite dropping out of the top three.


A post shared by Aga Radwanska (@aradwanska) on

The 28-year-old has amassed US$26.5 million in prize money – the fifth highest of all time!


A post shared by Aga Radwanska (@aradwanska) on

7. Caroline Wozniacki

Total Earnings: US$7.5 million

Prize Money: US$2.5 million

Despite popping up in five tournament finals (and not winning any), world number three Caroline Wozniacki’s season only really got going with her capture of her first WTA Finals win in 2017.

Nonetheless, the 27-year-old Danish tennis pro still has a long list of corporate partnership with the likes of Adidas, Rolex, Usana, Babolat and State Drinks.

US Open 2017 @adidas @stellamccartney

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6. Garbine Muguruza

Total Earnings: US$7.7 million

Prize Money: US$4.2 million

Not content with last season’s French Open title, Garbine Muguruza carried on her rich vein of tennis form by capturing the 2017 Wimbledon Open crown.

However, the corresponding US$2.8 million in prize money and bonuses will only be included next year as it is after the 1 June deadline.

Siiiiii!!!! @wimbledon champ!!

A post shared by Garbiñe Muguruza (@garbimuguruza) on

5. Venus Williams

Total Earnings: US$10.5 million

Prize Money: US$3.5 million

While she doesn’t boast as many sponsors as her sister Serena, California native Venus Williams does have her own apparel line Eleven.

(Sneak peek!) @elevenbyvenus #2017

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Besides earning her six-figure pay check in the courts, the world number five female tennis legend is also a popular motivational speaker.

4. Ronda Rousey

Total Earnings: US$11 million

Prize Money: US$8 million

While it wasn’t a good year in the Octagon for the UFC 207 headliner, Ronda Rousey still made out like a bandit – securing a record-tying US$3 million guarantee and a cut of the 1.1 million pay-per-view buys.

Besides getting hitched, the former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion has kept herself busy in Hollywood – as a coach on the Battle of the Network Stars TV show and starring in the upcoming movie Mile 22 with Mark Wahlberg.

3. Danica Patrick

Total Earnings: US$12.2 million

Prize Money: US$7.2 million

Danica Patrick, the most successful female American professional stock car driver, is the first woman to win an IndyCar Series race as well as to finish third in the 2009 Indianapolis 500.

The part-time model, who drives for Stewart-Haas Racing this season, has ten personal sponsors which includes the likes of Coca-Cola, Ford and Nationwide.

2. Angelique Kerber

Total Earnings: US$12.6 million

Prize Money: US$7.6 million

So far, 2017 is proving to be a year to forget for 29-year-old German tennis pro. After winning two Grand Slams last year, Kerber struggled as she went out in the fourth round and first round at the Australian and US Open respectively.

But with residual sponsor bonuses, and the inking of five new corporate sponsorship deals, the Olympic silver medallist still manages second spot on our list as she slip out of the top twenty.

1. Serena Williams

Total Earnings: US$27 million

Prize Money: US$8 million

Making headlines both on and off the courts, tennis legend Serena Williams is the only female sportswoman on the ForbesThe World Highest-Paid Athletes 2017 list – coming in at number 51!

Though she has been sidelined since her record-setting Australian Open win at the start of the year, the 36-year-old happy-mother-of-one still managed to surpass her other more active colleagues, raking in US$27 million!

Angela Lee injured in car crash; out of Yamaguchi rematch

Angela Lee, the One Championship world atomweight title holder, got into a car accident while driving to training in the early hours of Monday morning.

The Hawaii-based youngest world champion has been in a fight camp since Saturday, 4 November in Oahu. Lee was scheduled to head the One Championship show Immortal Pursuit card on Friday, 24 November in Singapore.

The 21-year-old female MMA fighter supposingly fell asleep at the wheel, but was wearing a seatbelt at the time. Lee’s father and trainer Ken Lee stated that Angela’s car hit a guardrail on the highway. The axle snapped and the car flipped five-six times over 100 yards and landed on the opposite side of the highway, according to the police.

Although the car was a wreck, One Championship Chairman/CEO Chatri Sityodtong shared via his Facebook that Lee escaped with “only a concussion, some minor burns and a banged up body”.

As a result, Lee, after being advised by doctors, will NOT be taking on Japanese fighter Mei Yamaguchi in the much anticipated rematch at ONE’s Singapore show. The pair clashed in Singapore back in May 2016 – with Lee going the full five rounds. The match is considered by MMA fans worldwide to be one of the best fights for that year.

The Evolve MMA gym fighter has had an eventful year with two title defences (defeating Istela Nunes in May) and her engagement to fellow Evolve team mate 27-year-old Brazilian Bruno Pucci.

UFC 217 Preview

Doug Mattushek Doug Mattushek

UFC 217 is fast approaching and Doug Mattushek puts together a who’s who in the UFC zoo as the UFC heads to New York City.

The octagon at the iconic Madison Square Garden will host no less than three title fights in a star-studded line-up on Saturday.

Headline event
Michael Bisping v Georges St.Pierre for the UFC Middleweight Championship

The four ounce gloves are finally on as one of the most anticipated fights of the year takes place. Eight months ago there was talk of St.Pierre returning to the UFC, last having fought in 2013. Coming off the back of nine successful welterweight title defences, perhaps GSP’s return was always going to be for a title fight.

However, it’s not the one he was expecting.

In the four years of the Canadian’s absence, Bisping has been plying his trade very successfully at middleweight. His eye-opening performance came at UFC 199, when he an injury to Chris Weidman saw him step in at late notice against Luke Rockhold and stun the champion with a first round KO.

Since, a successful title defence came against Dan Henderson via unanimous decision after a brutal five rounds. Now, Bisping looks to end a 12-win streak and arguably turn himself into a UFC legend.

Prediction: Both fighters are natural strikers but GSP should have the edge in the wrestling department, a tool he has used to wear down his opponents in the past. Provided he can get Bisping to the mat, he should control he fight from there. Coming in a weight class higher and after so long outside the octagon, it remains to be seen if GSP still has the goods, but I’m picking St.Pierre to win by decision in a Battle Royale.

Cody Garbrandt v TJ Dillashaw for the UFC Bantamweight Championship

This fight has been along time coming. The pair were set to face-off at UFC 213 in July but Garabrant was forced to pull out due to a back injury.

Both fighters have experienced their best wins in recent times. For defending champion Garabrant – who is undefeated after 11 fights – he earned a Fight of the Night Performance bonus in his unanimous decision win over the mercurial Dominick Cruz last year in his first five round affair.

Interestingly, it was Cruz’s first fight since putting away Dillashaw earlier in 2016. However, Dillashaw was impressive against John Lineker last time out, also winning via decision.

Prediction: Both students of MMA, have similar styles and this one promises to be a technical battle for the purists, with points accumulation rather than finishing being the order of the day. The talented Garabrant should come through his first title defence damaged but victorious via decision.

Joanna Jedrzejczyk v Rose Namajunas for the UFC Women’s Strawweight Championship

They keep throwing them up…and she keeps knocking them down. Jedrzejczyk has effectively cleaned out the strawweight division, winning her last eight fights under the UFC banner while she is 14-0 in MMA.

Next up for Jedrzejczyk is Namajunas, arguably one of the more talented fighters in the division. The American is coming of a dominant win over Michelle Waterson, where she landed a head kick before scrambling Waterson to the mat for an efficient rear-naked choke in the second round.

But she is going to need all that talent if she is going to dethrone current division queen Jedrzejczyk.

While not known as a finisher, muay thai specialist Jedrzejczyk is certainly a striker, landing a record-setting 225 significant strikes last time out against Jessica Andrade in May.

Prediction: Jedrzejczyk’s killer instinct and experience is likely going to be too much for Namajunas to handle. The Pole will keep her distance to avoid takedowns and outscore Namajunas in strikes in another one-sided affair.

Best of the rest

The quality runs deep at UFC 217 and Stephen Thompson is one such fighter. The tree-time Performance of the Night winner has only recently come unstuck against Tyron Woodley at welterweight, coming off a draw and a contentious majority decision loss to the division champion.

But Thompson’s kickboxing skills are superb and opponent Jorge Masvidal better be watching closely. Masvidal is no slouch himself, with two TKO victories coming before is split decision loss to Demian Maia in May.

This fight has all the right ingredients for some fireworks and with no title on the line, both fighters can go for broke. I’m picking Thompson to get a KO win after some powerful strikes.

Finally, Johny Hendricks is desperate for a win. The former welterweight champion has just one victory from his last five bouts and is coming off a second round loss via TKO to Tim Boetsch in June.

But the tide could turn on Saturday for the American.

UFC newcomer Paulo Borrachinha made his debut in March, taking out a couple fighters low down on the middleweight rankings via punches earlier this year. But an experienced Hendricks is a much tougher prospect for the young Brazilian, who is fighting outside Brazil for the first time on Saturday

Hendricks has one-punch KO power and I expect to see that return against Borrachinha as he notches up a much-needed victory.

GSP unconcerned by lack of fight hype

Georges St. Pierre is not worried about the apparent lack of hype surrounding his return to the UFC after a four year hiatus.

The French-Canadian is set to fight middleweight champion Michael Bisping for the title at UFC 217 on November 4 at Madison Square Garden. However, UFC commentator Joe Rogan revealed on a recent podcast that ticket sales for the event aren’t going as well as initially thought.

Nonetheless, GSP has waved goodbye to the proverbial hype-train and is focusing on the fight itself rather than the payday.

“I do not focus on that,” the 36-year-old told MMA Junkie.

“I don’t even care. I don’t care. I would rather make zero dollars and win my fight than make $10 million and lose my fight. This is my word, and I swear it’s true. It’s always been like that, even when I was poor. I want to win, and I don’t care about (money or recognition). They’re going to know me after I win.”

Thanks to @yacine_bandoui, @charbymma and @cesarfight4life for this great training and good luck in their upcoming fight!

A post shared by Georges St-Pierre (@georgesstpierre) on

To be fair, it is mostly the UFC’s job to generate interest in upcoming bouts and with a fight card like the one UFC 217 is boasting, that should not be a problem.

The card includes two other title fights, with bantamweight champion Cody Garbrandt facing the talented TJ Dillashaw and rising star Rose Namajunas challenging for the women’s strawweight belt against the mercurial Joanna Jedzerjczyk.

Meanwhile, St. Pierre, who last fought in a narrow split decision win over Johny Hendricks in 2013, is focusing on winning back a belt.

“I want to win the title,” confirmed the former welterweight champion.

“I’m happy that I got everything lined up for a fight and it’s the best training I can do and lifestyle and everything. I’m happy to be here. I’m very scared and stressed and afraid to fail, but that feeling makes me better. I’m happy to be here.”

SPW x FSA office invasion

Timothy Wee Timothy Wee

This is a public service announcement.

Singapore Pro Wrestling (SPW) will be holding their SPW presents Wrestlingcity.Asia- RELOAD show this Fri, 20 Oct at the Singapore Foochow Association.

We were not forced in any way to make this announcement. Our office was not invaded by The Eurasian Dragon, The Statement and Butcher Bellum Roy.

And no staff were harmed. Pinky swear.

#mockumentary #theoffice #largerthanlife #morethanmeetstheeye

McGregor may have his next big fight

Timothy Wee Timothy Wee

After all the speculation, it would seem that Conor McGregor will be prolonging his stay in boxing.

After his defeat at the hands of Floyd Mayweather, McGregor decided to take some time off on holiday with his infant son and wife. But he may have to cut those plans short.

Rumour has it that there are ongoing talk with UFC owner Dana White with someone that McGregor is all too familiar with.

No, we are not talking about Tony Ferguson – the man who Notorious is contractual obliged to fight next. But rather, his old sparring partner Paulie Malignaggi.

There is no love lost between the two; with McGregor’s social media team posting damaging footage of the Magic Man getting knocked down during one of their routine sparring sessions.

Falling out before Notorious’ big money fight with Mayweather, this war of words kicked off with Malignaggi questioning McGregor’s boxing abilities.

Malignaggi recently confirmed to that his promoter Al Haymon was in talk with White, all while taking a sly dig at his old pal, “I know Al Haymon’s talking to Dana White. I know they’re speaking, so if they want the fight they’ll make it. Once I spoke to Al and Team Haymon, and they told me they wanted to make this fight, I knew that the only way this fight doesn’t happen is if [Conor McGregor] has absolutely no balls.”

Technically, the 36-year-old former world champion is retired after losing to Sam Eggington this year.

But the chance of settling the score in such a bout is hard to turn down, especially with such a high profile: “This fight will pay him more, this fight will get him more exposure. This fight is a bigger fight than anybody else he has… There’s no more Mayweather fight. This fight is the biggest fight there is.”

Over to you Notorious, the ball is in your court…

Bodybuilder dies after kick-boxing bout

Singaporean bodybuilder Pradip Subramanian has died following his celebrity Asia Fighting Championship (AFC) kick-boxing match against YouTube personality Steven Lim.

The celebrity bout, which was part of the inaugural AFC card held at Marina Bay Sands on Saturday, saw Lim win via TKO.

Subramanian, who had been called up as a late replacement for original opponent Sylvester Sim after he pulled out on Friday because of insurance issues, received a number of blows to the head during the fight and appeared dazed when the referee called an end to the fight.

Video of the fight can be seen here:

The 32-year-old was taken to Singapore General Hospital where he was pronounced dead at around 9pm, according to a statement from the organisers released early on Sunday.

The statement said: “We are deeply saddened to share the news that Mr. Pradip Subramanian, Exhibition Match-Up fighter and President of the World Bodybuilding and Physique Sports Federation of Singapore (WBPF) has passed away at the Singapore General Hospital (SGH) on 23rd September 2017 at 21:00 hrs.

“We are in close contact with the medical staff at the hospital to ascertain the cause of death and request that during this difficult time we should come together and extend our support to Mr Subramanian’s family, friends and associates and refrain from any speculation.

“Mr Subramanian’s project, the AFC Physique Championships (APC) which is scheduled for 24th September 2017 will be cancelled as a mark of respect,” it added.

Lim posted a message of condolences after learning of Subramanian’s death.

It read: “Rest in Peace, my really truly respected fearless warrior and fighter and awesome boxing instructor, Pradip Subramanian!!!”

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