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‘This is ours’ - New ONE interim champion Geje Eustaquio dedicates title to fellow Filipinos

  Friday night at the Mall of Asia Arena, Team Lakay flyweight Geje ‘Gravity’ Eustaquio brought another championship back to the Philippines, as he bested former ONE flyweight world champion Kairat ‘The Kazakh’ Akhmetov by Unanimous Decision to become the new ONE interim flyweight champion. It was a true test for the Pinoy, who showcased his elite striking and his ever-improving grappling game to earn the judges’ nod after five rounds of action. “The feeling is unexplainable,” Eustaquio said during the post-fight press conference and talked about his teammates Honorio Banario and Eduard Folayang both having runs as ONE world champions. “Honorio had this before, Kuya Eduard had it, he defended it one time. We’re proud and I’m happy, the feeling is unexplainable because one more time, we have this one in The Land of The Orient Pearl.” As far as the Baguio City native is concerned, the new piece of hardware that he’ll be bringing back home to the famed Team Lakay gym isn’t solely his, rather it’s an honor he shares with everyone, from his team, his family, and also his fellow Filipinos. “Every fighter who stands in that cage, dreams to have this one, and I’m proud, with the people on my back, we have this, and one more time, this is not mine, this is ours.” “To all the Filipinos out there, this is ours, to the people who are there on my back since day one, this is ours.” added Eustaquio. “This is a product of team work, it’s not just Gravity who came up to the cage and grabbed this belt. It’s not about me, it’s about the people who stand in my back, its about the people who cheered, who go to Mall of Asia Arena, who watch on their TV in order for this sport to grow.” Along with former featherweight king Banario and former lightweight king Folayang, Eustaquio becomes just the third member of Team Lakay to bring home ONE gold. Furthermore, he becomes just the fourth Filipino to become a ONE world champion, including reigning ONE heavyweight champion Brandon Vera. This isn’t Eustaquio’s first dance for gold however, as he challenged for the vacant flyweight world title back in 2014, losing via submission to current champion Adriano Moraes. With the interim title in his possession, Eustaquio will soon get another crack at Moraes to unify their flyweight champsionships. When asked about his inevitable matchup with the reigning champ, Eustaquio’s response was simple. “If he’s ready, I’m ready. Rock and roll, let’s go.” Eustaquio said with his usual calm confidence. “As I said, I got the best in the business on my back, they can prepare me anytime, anywhere.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnJan 29th, 2018

ONE: No More Detours - Kevin Belingon wants Bibiano Fernandes next

Six years since his ONE Championship debut, Team Lakay’s Kevin ‘The Silencer’ Belingon is finally a World Champion in the martial arts promotion. At ONE: REIGN OF KINGS last 27 July, in front of a partisan pro-Philippines crowd at the SM Mall of Asia Arena, Belingon defeated reigning ONE Featherweight and Lightweight World Champion Martin ‘The Situ-Asian’ Nguyen to capture the ONE Interim Bantamweight World Championship. For Belingon, it was a childhood dream come true. “I can’t explain this feeling. I’m the happiest athlete tonight,” Belingon said during the post-match interview. “Thank you to all the people who came out to support me, and of course to ONE Championship, my team, my coaches and trainers, and my teammates,” With the win, Belingon becomes the fifth Filipino to capture ONE World Championship gold, as he joins reigning ONE Heavyweight World Champion Brandon ‘The Truth’ Vera, as well as Team Lakay stablemates in reigning ONE Flyweight World Champion Geje ‘Gravity’ Eustaquio, former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard ‘Landslide’ Folayang, and former ONE Featherweight World Champion Honorio ‘The Rock’ Banario. And while making history as a world champion is indeed a prestigious feat, even more important for Belingon is that he’s finally secured his spot as the next person to challenge reigning ONE Bantamweight World Champion Bibiano ‘The Flash’ Fernandes. Fernandes is currently recovering from an injury, and when the most dominant champion in ONE Championship history finally returns, Belingon will be right there, waiting for his rematch. (READ ALSO: No longer just a contender, Kevin Belingon has more surprises in store for Bibiano Fernandes) “I respect [Bibiano] as a champion, but we are in the same weight class, and I am the top contender, so there is no escape in facing me. I hope you recover fast, and that we can make the fight this year.” Belingon said. Belingon and Fernandes first shared the cage back in January of 2016 at ONE: DYNASTY OF CHAMPIONS, in Changsha, China, with Fernandes retaining the title via a first-round submission win. The loss did nothing but fuel Belingon’s world championship dreams even more, and the road back to the championship picture was a long one for the 30-year old, who had to run through a gauntlet of former world title contenders and a two-division champion in a just under two years. Currently riding six straight victories dating back to October of 2016, Belingon has taken out the likes of Toni Tauru, Reece ‘Lightning’ McLaren, Andrew Leone, and Nguyen, pretty much a who’s-who in ONE Championship’s bantamweight division. “I have faced many tough opponents leading up to this interim title, and I believe I have earned my spot to face Bibiano again,” Belingon said in an interview with ONE Championship’s official website. Now, the Baguio City native has his sights firmly set on Fernandes and the ONE Bantamweight World Championship. Nothing else, no one else. “I am looking forward to our rematch. No more detours. Bibiano should be next, and I fully expect to be facing him soon.” Surely, ‘soon’ can’t fast enough for Belingon, but the reality is that he’ll have to wait for Fernandes to be cleared to compete. In the meantime however, the newly-crowned interim champion could use some time off as well, to heal up before getting back to business. He is, after all, coming off a tough five-round main event. “Right now, I am just focused on resting and healing my body. I am pretty banged up. My ankle and shin are bruised, and they need time to recover,” Belingon said. “Once everything is good to go, then I will be back in training. But for now, I am going to enjoy the rest. It still has not sunk in that I am a World Champion.” He continued. While indeed, the record books will show that Belingon has already held world championship gold, the Filipino star knows in himself that there’s still one more bit of work to be done, and that’s to avenge his loss to Fernandes and become the undisputed ONE Bantamweight World Champion. “Until I beat Bibiano, [however], I will always feel like there is unfinished business to take care of.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 7th, 2018

ONE: Kevin Belingon s world title win is the product of team effort from Team Lakay

Friday night at the Mall of Asia Arena, Team Lakay’s Kevin Belingon became the latest member of Team Lakay to capture a world championship by defeating two-division titleholder Martin Nguyen in the main event of ONE: Reign of Kings to win the ONE Championship Interim Bantamweight World Champion. And while it was Belingon who did the work inside the cage, the win wasn’t just his, rather it was all of the Philippines’ and of course, Team Lakay's. As former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard Folayang explained, Belingon’s win was the result of team effort. “Masayang-masaya ako kasi na-predict ko na yan noon pa eh, talagang mananalo si Kevin,” Folayang said during the post-fight press conference. “Of course, because you can see that we worked very hard and of course, smart on our preparation, talagang we helped each other.” Nguyen is, of course, a familiar opponent for Team Lakay, with Folayang having faced the Viet-Aussie star back in 2017. “Kung ano yung pwede naming ibigay na advice or time na maibibigay sa kasama namin, preparing for a fight, we give it.” Folayang continued. With Belingon’s interim title win, he becomes the fourth member of Team Lakay to hold ONE World Championship gold, joining Folayang, former ONE Featherweight World Champion Honorio Banario, and reigning ONE Championship Flyweight World Champion Geje Eustaquio. Add reigning ONE Heavyweight World Champion Brandon Vera to that list, and you have all five world champions representing the Philippines, making it the country with the most world title wins in ONE Championship's seven-year history.  The way Folayang sees it, there’s more on the way. “I think this is one of the memorable moments of our team, because, hindi ko alam, malapit na yata namin kunin lahat [ng championships].” the former lightweight king said playfully. And while what Folayang said was in jest, it isn’t wrong by any means. Friday night’s ONE card had two other winnner from the famed Benguet-based MMA stable, as Folayang decisioned Russian newcomer Aziz Pahrudinov, while former strawweight title contender Joshua Pacio steamrolled through Thailand’s Pongsiri Mitsatit in just one round. Both Folayang and Pacio are riding winning streaks, and both are inching their way closer to title contention. “If ONE Championship or sir Chatri [Sityodtong] will give me the opportunity to face Yoshitaka Naito, why not.” Pacio said at the presser. Should it push through, it would be Pacio’s second go-around with Naito after losing to the reigning ONE Strawweight World Champion back in 2016. If everything goes according to plan for Team Lakay, they could have two, even three more world championships coming back home to La Trinidad pretty soon......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 30th, 2018

Riding high again, Team Lakay lauded by ONE chairman as best team in Asia

At the end of 2017, Benguet-based MMA stable Team Lakay found themselves on a bit of a downslide. After riding high for the latter part of 2016 and most of 2017, the team absorbed a number of bitter losses, including the KO loss that cost Eduard Folayang his ONE Championship Lightweight world title. Now, a little over seven months into 2018, Team Lakay is once again reaching new heights. 2018 saw flyweight star Geje Eustaquio become the interim flyweight world champion in January, and then unify the titles against Adriano Moraes in June. Friday at ONE: Reign of Kings in Manila, Team Lakay gained another world champion in bantamweight knockout artist Kevin Belingon, who defeated two-division world champion Martin Nguyen to become the interim ONE Championship Bantamweight World Champion. Team Lakay is also home to reigning BRAVE FC Bantamweight World Champion Stephen Loman. Already with three current world champions in their stable, it’s highly likely that there’s more to come. Former champions Folayang and Honorio Banario are currently tearing it up in the lightweight division, and both of them are very much in the title picture. Strawweight standout and former title contender Joshua Pacio is on a solid streak of his own, with three straight wins via stoppage. The 22-year old could be getting another crack at the championship again soon. While names like Edward Kelly, Danny Kingad, Gina Iniong, and April Osenio are also all part of the top-tier of their respective divisions. It’s shaping up to be yet another banner year for Team Lakay, and head coach Mark Sangiao saw it coming. After all, bouncing back isn’t anything new for the Philippines’ most prestigious MMA team. “Mayroon yung mga time, nasabi ko nung huli, nung unang mga ONE, matatalo kami ng 0-5, pero pinilit namin.” Coach Mark said during the post-fight press conference, Friday evening. “Tinignan namin talaga yung mga kulang, yung mga weak side nila, tapos na-improve hanggang sa bumawi kami, same with sa 2016.” 2016 saw Team Lakay go on a 16-fight winning streak, and then in November of that year, Folayang captured the ONE lightweight crown after dethroning long-time champion Shinya Aoki. “Tapos pumunta sa 2017, medyo may mga nag-pabaya.” Sangiao bared. “Nasabi ko nung huli na babalik yung team na mas-malakas pa.” True enough, Team Lakay has managed to bounce back and has gained even more prestige in the last couple of months. In fact, ONE Championship founder and chairman Chatri Sityodtong has even gone so far as to say that he believes Team Lakay is the best team there is in Asia. “ I have massive respect for all fight teams, but I believe there is no question that Team Lakay is now the #1 fight team in Asia today.” Sityodtong said in a Facebook post. “Despite a very modest budget and limited resources, Mark Sangiao has produced one of the best fight teams in the world. Every fighter on Team Lakay is a genuine monster with outstanding skills, unlimited cardio, and extraordinary gameness.” High praise from the head honcho himself, and the owner of Evolve MMA in Singapore, another one of Asia's most talent-laden MMA stables. With all the success that the team is enjoying now, it’s up to them to keep the momentum going. They've been low, and now they're on a high. There's no doubt that they possess the talent, the skills, and the heart to go even higher......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 30th, 2018

Belingon dominates Nguyen for ONE interim bantamweight belt

Kevin Belingon added another golden strap to the mythos of Team Lakay after dominating Martin Nguyen for five rounds to earn the ONE interim bantamweight title Friday at Mall of Asia Arena. The 30-year-old Belingon joined ONE flyweight champion Geje Eustaquio as current titlists under Team Lakay, which had Honorio Banario and Eduard Folayang as former holders of ONE Championship gold. "To my team this is an honor and this is a great feeling," said Belingon. "And I'm a champion." "I trained hard for this fight to get this belt and I'm proud to say I'm one of the champions in the Philippines with Geje and [heavyweight champion] Brandon [Vera]." Belingon continued to stuff N...Keep on reading: Belingon dominates Nguyen for ONE interim bantamweight belt.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJul 27th, 2018

ONE: Kevin Belingon targeting history against Martin Nguyen as well

If making history as the first three-division world champion in mixed martial arts is what Martin Nguyen is after in his highly-anticipated encounter against Kevin Belingon, the Filipino spitfire could likewise establish a new record for the Philippines in ONE Championship should he win over his Vietnamese-Australian foe. Both men are slated to face each other in the main event of ONE: REIGN OF KINGS, which takes place at the 20,000-seater SM Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines on July 27. ONE Championship has raised the stakes of the scheduled five-round clash between Belingon and Nguyen as the ONE Interim Bantamweight World Championship will be up for grabs. If Belingon succeeds in securing the gold-plated strap at the expense of Nguyen, the Philippines will set a record of most championship wins in the seven-year history of the promotion. “The main goal for Filipino martial arts athletes like me is to bring pride, honor and glory to our country. This match against Marin Nguyen on July 27 is another opportunity to hoist the Philippine flag aloft on the world stage of this beautiful sport,” he said. To date, there have been four Filipino world champions under the ONE Championship banner since 2013. Honorio Banario became the first Philippine-rooted competitor to notch a huge prize in ONE Championship when he defeated compatriot Eric Kelly by fourth-round stoppage for the inaugural ONE Featherweight World Championship in February 2013. It was followed by Brandon Vera, who crowned himself as the first ONE Heavyweight World Champion by knocking out Paul Cheng in 26 seconds with a high kick in December 2015. Meanwhile, Eduard Folayang pulled off a major upset victory over Japanese legend Shinya Aoki in November 2016 to capture the ONE Lightweight World Championship. Geje Eustaquio joined the list of Filipino world titleholders this past January, claiming the ONE Interim Flyweight World Championship with a split decision win over Kairat Akhmetov in a rematch before becoming the undisputed division kingpin in his second meeting with Adriano Moraes last June. With the ONE Interim Bantamweight World Title on the line, having his hand raised would symbolize so much to Belingon. Ever since losing to Bibiano Fernandes for the bantamweight crown in January 2016, Belingon has won five consecutive matches, routing the best contenders that the division has to offer. For Belingon, he could finally become a mixed martial arts world champion on July 27, which is the goal that he has been chasing ever since he launched his career in June 2007. “Becoming the champion has been my goal since my career started. It is a lifelong dream for me. I need to win my next bout to turn my dream into a reality,” he stated. “This is going to be a very exciting match. To take on an elite athlete like Martin, it will only be good for my experience. I look forward to testing my skills against him,” Belingon added. Sharing the cage with a dynamic knockout artist like Nguyen, Belingon asserted that he likes his chances versus the two-division world champion and shared his thoughts as to how things would play out at ONE: REIGN OF KINGS. “Martin has very good, high-level skills. His wrestling is very strong, and so is his boxing. He is aggressive, and he punches with power. There is no underestimating this guy,” he explained. “But I think his biggest weakness is his speed, especially in this fight. He is not faster than me. I think this will come down to who gets there first.” Although he is known for his explosive striking, massive knockout power, and fearlessness to engage, Belingon assured that he is prepared to go the distance with Nguyen. “I am training very hard to make sure I am well-equipped with everything I need to face any situation. If I have the opportunity to finish him, I will not hesitate to grab that chance. But I am prepared for this fight to go full five rounds as well,” he concluded......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 18th, 2018

‘No loser’ in Eustaquio-Morales ONE rematch

MACAU---It's safe to say that the fighting careers of Geje Eustaquio and Adriano Moraes will forever be intertwined. The two were the first fighters to duke it out for the inaugural ONE Championship World flyweight title wherein Moraes took the belt in 2014. And after four years, the two will face each other once more in a rematch for the undisputed belt. Eustaquio, who became the interim champion after defeating Kairat Akhmetov for the strap in January of 2018, said the rematch would be the culmination of four years of progress between him and Moraes. "Adriano, it's been four years since the last time we fought and this will show the development of how we grew up," said ...Keep on reading: ‘No loser’ in Eustaquio-Morales ONE rematch.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 21st, 2018

Learning doesn’t stop for Geje Eustaquio—inside and outside ONE cage

MACAU---There are two goals that Geje Eustaquio wants to achieve in the foreseeable future, one of which involves attaining a feat outside of the ONE Championship cage. Eustaquio, the ONE interim flyweight champion, holds a Master's diploma in Physical Education from University of the Cordilleras and he doesn't just want to become the full title holder but he also wants to pursue a higher degree of learning. The 29-year-old Team Lakay member said he wants to either get a Doctorate or take up Law. READ:ONE: Eustaquio puts Moraes on crosshairs "It's going to be between a Doctor's degree or a Law degree, we will see but I cannot say for now," said Eustaquio Thursday after ON...Keep on reading: Learning doesn’t stop for Geje Eustaquio—inside and outside ONE cage.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 21st, 2018

ONE: Interim champ Geje Eustaquio hopes son follows in his footsteps

While becoming a world champion is indeed motivation for Team Lakay flyweight star and reigning ONE Championship Interim Flyweight Champion Geje Eustaquio, the Baguio City native is being fueled by something...or someone else.  Meet Castiel Achilles Gerard Eustaquio, or Cage for short, Geje's four year old son.  "He’s my fuel, as I said, he’s my drive, motivation, and I’m happy and proud that he’s my son." said Eustaquio during a press conference in Macau, two days before his scheduled title unification bout against reigning ONE Flyweight World Champion Adriano Moraes at ONE: Pinnacle of Power on Satuday, July 23rd.  And while most other fighters would wish that their kids rather not follow in their footsteps, Geje believes otherwise.  It would give the 29-year old nothing but joy to see his little boy one day become a martial artist as well.  "Yeah, if he loves martial arts, I will be the happiest father in the world," "Because as I said, martial arts is not about fighting, it’s not about kicking, it’s a way of life." If Cage decided to take a different path however, daddy assures that his support will still be there, 100%  "Kung ibang sports, it depends on the sport. If he chooses basketball, if he chooses soccer, well my  support is a hundred percent."   Geje Eustaquio and Adriano Moraes battle of the undisputed ONE Championship Flyweight World Title at ONE: Pinnacle of Power, Saturday, June 23rd at the Studio City Events Center in Macau, China.  Catch it LIVE starting at 11:00 PM on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23! .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 21st, 2018

ONE: With title responsibilities, Geje Eustaquio’s pursuit for further learning has been put on hold

For Team Lakay flyweight star and reigning interim ONE Flyweight champion Geje Eustaquio, life is a continuous learning process. Already the holder of a Master’s Degree in Physical Education, the Baguio native admitted that he’s looking to even further expand his range of learning by either taking law or going for a Doctor’s Degree. The former teacher however admitted, that being an interim champion in Asia’s biggest mixed martial arts promotion is pretty time consuming, thus likely putting his schooling on hold. “It’s gonna be between a doctor’s degree or a law degree. We will see, I cannot say for now, most especially when you’re holding an interim belt, the responsibility is a bit harder.” Eustaquio said. “Kung before I train two, three rounds, now I train four, five, six rounds. It’s kinda tough. It’s on hold for now.” Saturday night at the Studio City Events Center in Macau, China, Eustaquio has the chance to elevate his world title status from interim to undisputed when he challenges reigning ONE Flyweight World Champion Adriano Moraes in a title unification bout. If Eustaquio pulls it off, he will carry the responsibility of being a world champion, and will have a target on his back. This could very well push his academic aspirations back even further. “Actually mas mahirap mag-isip na naman if I become the undisputed champion, because once again, sabi nga ni Spiderman, with great power comes great responsibility, so I have to maintain that belt and train more to maintain that belt.” But for someone who already has a Master’s Degree and is an accomplished mixed martial artist, what’s the motivation behind wanting to go back to school? For Geje, it’s pretty simple. “Life is learning.” “It doesn’t mean that when you have a degree, it’s so you can work, or you can have a better job. It’s about learning. When I have my doctor’s degree, it’s a long run of learning. When I have my law degree, it’s also a learning. For me, I treat as, everyday I learn, that’s why I go into this.” Eustaquio added.   Geje Eustaquio and Adriano Moraes battle of the undisputed ONE Championship Flyweight World Title at ONE: Pinnacle of Power, Saturday, June 23rd at the Studio City Events Center in Macau, China.  Catch it LIVE starting at 11:00 PM on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23! .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 21st, 2018

ONE: Four years since loss to Moraes, Eustaquio confident he s a better fighter

ONE interim flyweight champion Geje Eustaquio talks to the media ahead of his title unification bout against Adriano Moraes. Photo by Bong Lozada. Geje Eustaquio is not a fan of hyping himself up......»»

Category: newsSource:  philippinetimesRelated NewsJun 7th, 2018

Filipino Menchavez to make ONE debut in Macau

Another Filipino fighter will strut his stuff in Macau for ONE Championship's Pinnacle of Power card on June 23. Rodian Menchavez (5-1) is set to make his debut in the promotion, making it to the card that features interim ONE flyweight champion Geje Eustaquio (10-6) taking on undisputed ONE World flyweight titlist Adriano Moraes (17-2) in a title unification bout in the co-main event. Eustaquio's Team Lakay stable mates Edward Kelly (10-4) and Danny Kingad (6-1) are also in the card and are scheduled to face against Narantungalag Jadambaa (12-5) and Ma Hao Bin (10-2), respectively. Menchavez will bring his four-fight winning streak on the line against China's Li Kai Wen (7-4)...Keep on reading: Filipino Menchavez to make ONE debut in Macau.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 6th, 2018

ONE: Eustaquio-Moraes title bout moved to Macau, China

After initially being set for Beijing, it has been confirmed that ONE Championship's Pinnacle of Power card will be taking place in Macau instead.  The June 23 card is ONE's third trip to the so-called 'Las Vegas of Asia' and will feature two ONE Championship world title bouts.  Main eventing the card will be China's own ONE Strawweight World Champion Xiong Jing Nan defending her title for the first time against Argentinian Laura Balin, while co-main eventing the card will be Team Lakay star and Interim ONE Championship Flyweight World Champion Geje Eustaquio of the Philippines looking to unify the title against reigning ONE Championship Flyweight World Champion Adriano Moraes.  Eustaquio and Moraes first crossed paths inside a ONE Championship cage back in 2014, with Moraes submitting Eustaquio to claim the vacant ONE Championship Flyweight world title.  Also on the card will be Eustaquio's Team Lakay teammates, featherweight contender Edward Kelly as well as former title contender Danny Kingad.  Team Lakay has been part of ONE Championship's Macau cards since their first trip in 2016, which saw Eduard Folayang, Honorio Banario, and Joshua Pacio all pick up impressive victories.  A year later, Pacio returned to Macau but came up short against Japanese grappling ace Hayato Suzuki.  Macau also played witness to the coming out party of ONE Women's Atomweight contender Jomary Torres, as she shocked the world with a submission win over rising star Rika Ishige.  Macau has also been very good to reigning champion Moraes, who defeated Tilek Batyrov in 2015 to become interim champion, and then defeated Kairat Akhmetov a year later, also in Macau to become the undisputed ONE Flyweight World Champion.    ONE Championship: Pinnacle of Power will emanate for the Studio City Events Center in Macau, China.   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 30th, 2018

ONE: Geje Eustaquio vs. Adriano Moraes world title unification bout set for Beijing in June

Team Lakay standout and reigning ONE Championship Interm Flyweight World Champion Geje "Gravity" Eustaquio gets the chance to become an undisputed world champion when he challenges reigning ONE Flyweight World Champion Adriano "Mikinho" Moraes this June. The Eustaquio-Moraes title unification bout is set as one of the headliners on ONE's Pinnacle of Power card set for June 16th in Beijing, China.  Eustaquio (10-6), an entertaining striker fighting out of Baguio City, captured ONE's interim flyweight title back in January after outpointing former titleholder Kairat Akhmetov in a five-round unanimous decision win.  Reigning champion Moraes (17-2), an elite grappler from Brazil, is on his second run as ONE's flyweight king. Moraes defeated Akhmetov back in 2017 to reclaim the title, and is coming off a dominant title defense back in November in Manila, submitting Eustaquio's teammate Danny Kingad in the first round.  This will be Eustaquio and Moraes' second time to meet in a ONE cage, as the two flyweight stars locked horns back in 2014 for the vacant ONE Flyweight world title, with Moraes getting the second round submission win.  ONE Championship also revealed that China's own reigning ONE Women's Flyweight world champion Xiong Jing Nan will be making her first title defense against Argentinian Laura Balin.  Also expected to be on the card are Team Lakay standouts Kingad and Edward Kelly.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 19th, 2018

After title win, Eustaquio eyes unification clash with Moraes

New ONE Interim Flyweight Champion Geje Eustaquio is ready to move on after proving his doubters wrong with his unanimous decision win over Kairat Akhmetov in the main event of ONE: Global Superheroes on Friday. The 28-year-old had no second thoughts when asked if he's ready to unify the titles against current champion Adriano Moraes in a potential mega-match in the near future. "If he's ready, I'm ready. Rock and roll, let's go," he said. New ONE Interim Flyweight Champion Geje Eustaquio says that he's ready to face current Flyweight Champion Adriano Moraes anytime. "Rock and roll," he said. @ONEChampionship pic.twitter.com/UdB2Knoqr6 --- Randolph B. Leongson (@RLeongsonIN...Keep on reading: After title win, Eustaquio eyes unification clash with Moraes.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJan 27th, 2018

Team Lakay s Geje Eustaquio gets ONE interim title shot in Manila

Team Lakay flyweight Geje 'Gravity' Eustaquio gets a massive opportunity to start 2018, fights for the ONE Championship interim flyweight world title at ONE: Global Superheroes on Friday, January 26th at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Manila.  Baguio native Eustaquio will meet former flyweight world champion Kairat Akhmetov of Kazakhstan in a rematch of their controversial three-round war back in 2017 that went to the former champion via split decision.  Regarded as one of the most talented strikers in the flyweight division, the 28-year old Eustaquio had won three of his last four bouts prior to the controversial loss to Akhmetov, which included a successful return to the flyweight division against Thailand's Anatpong 'Mak' Bunrad.  Six of Eustaquio's nine career wins have come under the ONE banner, which includes victories over veterans Gianni Subba, Saiful Merican, and current ONE strawweight world champion Alex Silva.  The owner of an impressive 23-1 professional record, Almaty, Kazakhstan's Akhmetov came into ONE as an unbeaten prospect and immediately left a mark by snatching the flyweight world title from Adriano Moraes in his promotional debut.  Moraes would regain the title back two years later, but not without a fight from the Kazakh.  In Eustaquio and Akhmetov's first meeting back in September of 2017, many believed that the Filipino was denied a knockout win by an errant call from referee Yuji Shimada.  During the first round, Eustaquio landed a barrage of upkicks, stunning Akhmetov. Shimada paused the action and allowed the former champion to recover.  Akhmetov would later get the split decision nod after three rounds.  Eustaquio now gets the chance to avenge his loss and capture interim title gold in front of a partisan Filipino crowd at the MoA Arena.  Joining Eustaquio on the Manila card will be Team Lakay teammates in former strawweight title challenger Joshua 'The Passion' Pacio and featherweight contender Edward 'The Ferocious' Kelly, as well as Filipino lightweight veteran Eric 'The Natural' Kelly.  Full ONE Championship: Global Superheroes fight card to be announced soon.    ONE Championship: Global Superheroes happens on Friday, January 26th at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Manila.  Catch the telecast on January 26th, 8:30 PM LIVE on S+A channel 23......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 10th, 2018

ONE: Former champ Eduard Folayang learned from teammate Kevin Belingon’s title win over Martin Nguyen

Team Lakay bantamweight star Kevin Belingon did something that not a lot of people have been able to do, and that’s defeat Martin Nguyen. In the main event of ONE: Reign of Kings, Friday evening at the Mall of Asia Arena, Belingon outstruck and outworked Nguyen over the course of five rounds to earn a unanimous decision win and become the new Interim ONE Championship Bantamweight World Champion. The Baguio native becomes just the third man to defeat Nguyen, along with former ONE Featherweight World Champion Marat Gafurov and reigning ONE Bantamweight World Champion Bibiano Fernandes. As Belingon implemented his winning gameplan against Nguyen, his teammate and former ONE Championship Lightweight World Champion Eduard Folayang was an interested observer. Aside from watching one of his Team Lakay brothers fight for a world championship, Folayang is also preparing for what could be a possible rematch with Nguyen, the reigning ONE Championship Lightweight king. Folayang who took to the cage Friday evening, defeating previously-undefeated Russian Combat Sambo world champion Aziz Pahrudinov via Unanimous Decision. Having already won back-to-back fights, Folayang is on the brink of another shot at regaining the championship that he used to hold, and during the post-fight presser, Folayang admitted to have overlooked some stuff in his previous fight with Nguyen. “I think in the first time na nag-meet kami [ni Martin Nguyen], I overlooked some things, in some cases, na-overconfident din ako, and nakalimutan ko na it’s MMA,” Folayang bared. “There will always be a way for your opponent to hit you.” Against Nguyen, Folayang was on the receiving end of a vicious KO. Watching Belingon beat Nguyen however, Folayang says that he’s picked up a more confident approach, should he and the Viet-Aussie star share the cage again. “On the fight of Kevin, I really learned a lot. Of course I need to be careful in those areas na kalakasan ng kalaban, and then kung saan ka malakas, be careful din kasi doon ka papasukin.” Since falling to Nguyen, Folayang has taken a more patient approach in his fights, and it has led him to two convincing wins against a pair of tough Russian grapplers. With the way things are playing out in the lightweight division however, it’s more likely that Folayang finds himself going up against another former opponent and fellow former champion in Shinya Aoki. Folayang dethroned Aoki for the lightweight title back in 2016, and says that a rematch against the grappling ace wouldn’t be a problem. “Okay naman ang rematch kay Shinya,” Folayang said, before jokingly suggesting that another unbeaten Russian could be the next person that ONE puts in front of him. “Siyempre hindi lang natin alam, baka mamaya another undefeated na Russian ulit, si Khabib [Nurmagomedov] naman ang susunod, we just really don’t know. That’s a joke.” the former champ said with a laugh. Nurmagomedov, of course, is the reigning UFC Lightweight World Champion......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 30th, 2018

ONE: Joshua Pacio amazed Renzo Gracie with his Baguio Jiu-Jitsu

Friday night's ONE Championship: Reign of Kings card saw the Philippines pulling off a complete four-for-four sweep, capped off by Kevin Belingon's dominant five-round decision win over Martin Nguyen to capture the Interim ONE Bantamweight World Championship.  Arguably most spectacular win however, came from 22-year old Team Lakay strawweight star Joshua 'The Passion' Pacio, who steamrolled through undefeated Thai striker Pongsiri Mitsatit.  Pacio needed just needed three-and-a-half minutes to mount, brutalize, and submit Misatit with a modified armlock, which he playfully christened 'The Passion Lock." "My gameplan is really to get the Rear Naked Choke," Pacio said during the post-fight press conference. "That submission that I did a while ago, I tried it once in training, and tonight I’m so happy that I showcased it on the international stage." After punishing Mitsatit from the mount, Pacio took the Thai's back, and as he said, tried to go for the choke, but ended up grabbing hold of Misati's arm and torquing it back applying pressure on the shoulders and forcing the tapout.  It was a pretty slick submission on the fly for the kid from Baguio City, who's steadily shown improvement in his ground game, and it's all thanks to a special discipline of martial arts.  "It came from that BJJ - Baguio Jiu-Jitsu." Pacio said, with a laugh.  And while it initially started out as a play on words with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Team Lakay's Baguio Jiu-Jitsu is now becoming a massive part of their game, and it has won the team a number of fights, and world titles.  From Eduard Folayang's submission defense against Shinya Aoki, to Geje Eustaquio's well-rounded approach against Adriano Moraes, and Pacio's seven wins via submission, the Baguio-based warriors have taken what was once their supposed weakness and turned into a pivotal part of their game.  “Please don’t underestimate our BJJ, or what we call Baguio Jiu-Jitsu,” Eustaquio warns. “In more time, we will submit you guys.” Eustaquio said after his world championship win over Moraes in Macau last June.  While striking will always be Team Lakay's bread and butter, as they've shown in their performances as of late, their ground game can hang with the best of the best in ONE Championship.  That improvement was the result of years of coming up short and getting criticized for it.  "Of course, we learned from our past. Yung mga criticism na kinain namin noon, hindi namin tinake as a negative, but we take it as a positive thing, and we worked our ass hard." said former ONE Lightweight World Champion Folayang. "Siyempre kaya may Baguio Jiu-Jitsu ngayon, kasi that’s how we do it. We keep on learning from other people that will help us improve the things that we know we are weak on." Making it even more memorable for Pacio, was the fact that one of the legends of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu was there to see him pull that crazy submission off.  According to Pacio, sixth-degree Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt and grappling royalty Renzo Gracie, who was scheduled to fight later on in the card, gave the young Pinoy some props after the win.  "Ayun nga, sa dugout kanina, na-amaze siya. Nagpa-picture siya sa akin," Pacio said jokingly, drawing laughs from the media. "Baliktad, nagpa-picture ako sa kanya, tapos tinuro niya din yung depensa nun." Quite the moment for the kid they call "The Passion. "Syempre napaka-laki, kasi once-in-a-lifetime lang yun.".....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 28th, 2018

Manny Pacquiao is welcome to defend his WBA title under ONE Championship, says chairman

In the presence of some of the Philippines' best mixed martial artists, ONE Championship chairman and founder Chatri Sityodtong kicked off Tuesday's Reign of Kings press launch by congratulating arguably the most popular Filipino warrior, eight-division boxing world champion Manny Pacquiao.  Two weekends ago in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Pacquiao became an eleven-time world champion by stopping Argentinian Lucas Matthysse in seven rounds to become the new WBA (Regular) Welterweight World Champion.  Aside from giving Pacquiao props, Sityodtong outright invited Pacquiao to fight under the ONE Championship banner, even suggesting that the Filipino boxing legend be the on the main event of a massive ONE card in the Philppines.  "Manny, congratulations, I'm amazed by your legendary career," Sityodtong said. "Let's join hands, let's give the Filipino fans what they want, let's do an all-Filipino heroes card, a mega, mega-card, blast that to the whole world, Manny Pacquiao, please, I invite you to compete in ONE Championship."  Boxing is just the latest step that ONE Championship has taken to becoming a complete, global martial arts promotion.  In 2017, ONE put on grappling superfights as well as exhibition bouts featuring regional martial arts such as Lethwei in Myanmar and Muay Thai in Thailand.  Earlier this year, ONE went all out with their inclusion of striking-based martial arts such as Muay Thai and Kickboxing with the launch of the ONE Super Series, which has already featured some big-name strikers such as world champion Giorgio Petrosyan and Lumpinee Stadium legend Sam-A Gaiyanghadao.  "What we want to do is showcase all the combat sports, all the flavors, and hopefully we'll get multi-division champions across the different platforms to really celebrate Asia's greatest cultural treasure, martial arts." For Sityodtong, getting Pacquiao, arguably the most influential Asian combat sports icon, to compete under the ONE banner would definitely be a monumental milestone. "Me inviting Manny Pacquiao, I'm dead serious. If he says yes, let's do it. I'd love for him to defend his belt here in the Philippines, and give the Filipino fans what they want, a mega-card." The card, Sityodtong added, would feature other Pinoy combat sports heroes such as reigning ONE Heavyweight World Champion Brandon Vera, former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard Folayang, and reigning ONE Flyweight World Champion Geje Eustaquio just to name a few.  Having Pacquiao defend his WBA strap on a ONE card isn't completely out of the realm of possibility, especially since the promotion announced earlier this month that they've managed to get Thai boxing star and reigning WBC Super Flyweight World Champion Srisaker Sor Rungvisai to defend his titles on ONE Championship's Bangkok card in October.  The 31-year old Rungvisai is considered by many as among the top-ten best pound-for-pound boxers in the game today.  With Pacquiao aiming for an in-ring return later this year, could ONE actually snag one of the biggest names in combat sports history?    Catch ONE Championship: Reign of Kings LIVE on Friday, July 27th, 8:30 PM on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23!.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 24th, 2018

Eustaquio claims ONE flyweight crown in Macau

Interim champion Geje Eustaquio of Baguio’s Team Lakay won by split decision over Adriano Moraes to formally claim the ONE flyweight crown Saturday night in Macau......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJun 24th, 2018

ONE: Danny Kingad happy to play gatekeeper if Geje Eustaquio wins ONE title

Macau, China - ONE: PINNACLE OF POWER in Macau, China on June 23 is one of the deepest cards from top to bottom offered by ONE Championship for its 24-event calendar this 2018. From the preliminary portion to the main card of ONE: PINNACLE OF POWER, there are plenty of bouts with championship and ranking implications, including the three-round flyweight encounter between former title contender Danny Kingad and Chinese prospect Ma Hao Bin. The winner of the aforementioned 61.2-kilogram tussle could earn a shot at the ONE Flyweight World Championship, which will be on the line in the main event of ONE: PINNACLE OF POWER as Adriano Moraes is slated to duke it out with Geje Eustaquio in a much-awaited rematch and title unification contest. Kingad is now trying to build some momentum towards a second crack at the ONE Flyweight World Championship, while Ma has aced six of his assignments since joining the promotion in 2016. However, the 22-year-old Baguio City native finds himself in a peculiar position if he and his teammate Eustaquio will walk out of the Studio City Event Center with respective victories. Kingad knows that he has to be relegated to a gatekeeping role if Eustaquio will be successful in unifying both titles against Moraes at ONE: PINNACLE OF POWER. “I will be super happy for coach Geje if he wins the match in Macau. It’s an honor to be competing alongside him on June 23. I’ve learned a lot of things from him. For this training camp, I’ve spent more time with him. I want him to win the title,” he said. Although he could be knocking on the door for a world title shot again with a decisive win over Ma, Kingad stressed that he will gladly play gatekeeper to Eustaquio. “I don’t mind filling that role if ever he wins against Adriano Moraes. He is my senior, and we are teammates. He is like a brother to me,” he stated. “I am still young. I believe that my time will come.” Kingad is not fond of the idea of squaring off with Eustaquio for the flyweight crown, pointing out that he would not trade his treasured friendship with his Team Lakay comrade for a shot at the world title. “That's not going to happen. We always go at it in practice anyway. I'm happy that I get to spar with him all the time because he pushes me to the limit. We push each other, and we push each other to the next level,” he shared. “I will support coach Geje all the way. For now, I'll just keep getting better as a competitor. I'll wait for my time,” Kingad added. Following an unsuccessful challenge for the ONE Flyweight World Championship this past November against Moraes, which ended in his first professional defeat, Kingad rebounded with an impressive triumph over a battle-tested veteran in Sotir Kichukov four months later. Kingad seeks to sustain his winning groove in ONE Championship as he is set to take on Ma, a Chinese national freestyle wrestling champion with a mixed martial arts record of 11-2. Diligently preparing under the tutelage of head coach Mark Sangiao at Team Lakay in Baguio City, Kingad is fully aware of his opponent’s capabilities. “Training is, as usual, very tough. We are drilling very hard each and every day. I am still working on all areas, be it my striking or my grappling,” he mentioned. “Knowing my opponent is a good wrestler, however, I am particularly working on my takedown defense for this match. I want to keep this fight standing, so I have worked very hard on my takedown defense,” Kingad explained further. Despite the threat that Ma poses in the grappling department, Kingad assured that he is comfortable wherever the bout goes on June 23. “I want to test his stand-up game. I believe I am stronger, faster, and more explosive than he is,” he disclosed. “I am definitely going for a knockout in this match. However, if he does take me to the ground, I will be ready for anything.” Kingad believes that his in-ring meeting with Ma at ONE: PINNACLE OF POWER is a must-win clash as he embarks on a hazy road towards the organization’s flyweight championship. “I must win this bout because honestly, I don’t know what the future holds. What if we don’t get the result that we want for coach Geje? I am ready to step up. I cannot wait to get right back in there and make another run at the title. I know things will be very different next time,” he ended......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 18th, 2018