Eduard Folayang retains ONE lightweight title, decisions Ev Ting

Nissi Icasiano
Eduard Folayang retains ONE lightweight title, decisions Ev Ting
Folayang has a triumphant homecoming win, defeating Ev Ting in his first fight on Philippine soil in 3 years

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Fighting in the Philippines for the first time in nearly 3 years, beloved Filipino mixed martial arts superstar Eduard “Landslide” Folayang made it a triumphant homecoming by successfully defending his ONE Championship lightweight title. 

Folayang had his hand raised in victory against Malaysian-Kiwi sensation Ev “E.T.” Ting in the main event of ONE Championship’s “King of Destiny” card on Friday, April 21 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City. 

The 33-year-old Baguio City native kept the coveted gold-plated strap around his waist with a masterful unanimous decision win over Ting as Folayang never missed a single step in fending off his opponent.


Coming off a spectacular victory Japanese MMA legend Shinya Aoki last November, Folayang came out blazing in the first round, where he tagged Ting with his signature spinning back kicks to the midsection. 

Folayang also toyed Ting with his lethal left hooks to the temple and consistently telegraphed his packed body kicks to silence his counterpart’s explosive in the early proceedings of the contest.

Sustaining the momentum from the first round, Folayang was oozing confidence in the second stanza, where he staggered Ting with a left jab-right straight combination and stuffed every takedown attempt from his Malaysian-Kiwi foe.

Folayang continued to dictate the pace in the third frame, creating the proper distance to launch and land his spinning backfist.

However, Ting was able to open a gory gash above the right eyebrow of Folayang with a short elbow from an asphyxiating clinch.

Knowing that Folayang was getting ahead of the scorecard in the final two periods of the lightweight championship clash, Ting tried to entice the Filipino champion to engage in an all-out trade of strikes.

Folayang was reluctant to accept Ting’s invitation and elected to control the action from the outside with the intent to counter as the challenger came forward to receive lightning quick and powerful spinning attacks.

Folayang improves his professional MMA record to 18-5 and is now riding high on a four-bout winning streak.

Meanwhile, Ting snaps his 4-fight victory parade with the loss to Folayang and downgrades his prizefighting slate to 13-4.

Team Lakay goes 4-0 on undercard

Aside from the victorious Folayang, 4 Team Lakay fighters jubilantly raised the red banner of the celebrated MMA camp aloft on the undercard of ONE: KINGS OF DESTINY.

Kevin Belingon (15-5) made quick work of Finnish submission expert Toni “Dynamite” Tauru (11-5-1) in the co-headliner of ONE: KINGS OF DESTINY, attaining a first-round technical knockout victory. 

Belingon welcomed Tauru with open arms when the latter opted not employ his bread-and-butter and daringly decided to stand and bang with the hard-hitting Filipino. 

Having the bout in his comfort zone, Belingon took advantage and furnished the stoppage at 2:27of the first stanza to get sixth career knockout win.


One-time ONE Championship featherweight kingpin Honorio Banario (8-6-1) extended his winning roll as a lightweight fighter, knocking out Czech journeyman Jaroslav Jartim (8-6-1). 

Banario got the job done at 1:31 of the second round, shutting the lights off on Jartim with a shattering left hook to the chin.


 

The 27-year-old Team Lakay representative has now won 4 consecutive matches in ONE Championship, solidifying his position in the organization’s lightweight rankings. 

Highly-touted prospect Gina Iniong (5-2) made a successful promotional debut on the preliminary card of ONE: Kings of Destiny by pulverizing Filipina-English stalwart Nathalie Gonzales Hills (1-5) in 3 rounds. 

Iniong began the atomweight encounter aggressively, using her dreaded right hand to stifle Hills who appeared unable to time her opponent’s erratic rhythm. 

The impressive Team Lakay female atomweight also took Hills down to the ground at will, controlling her cage counterpart with a suffocating clinch game along the cage fence and a smothering top control on the mat.

Iniong recorded her first win as a member of the ONE Championship roster with a clear unanimous decision conquest of Hills. 

On the other hand, Danny Kingad (5-0) continues his inspiring climb in ONE Championship’s flyweight ladder by carving a unanimous decision against division newcomer Muhammad Aiman (2-2). 

Sharing the ONE Championship cage with a former MIMMA featherweight titleholder, Kingad delighted the crowd with a highly-technical display of striking, overpowering Aiman with looping right hands and body kicks. 

Kingad also demonstrated his imposing prowess in the grappling department, where he repeatedly scooped Aiman to the mat with authority. 

However, in the dying moments of the third round, Kingad was caught off guard with an armbar-triangle submission, prompting him to dig deep to remove the treacherous hold.

Kingad amazingly found the escape door and punctuated the final frame in a dominant top position, giving him the opening to rain down heavy blows. 

Eugene Toquero loses third-straight in ONE Championship

Stefer Rahardian (5-0) denied Eugene Toquero (8-5) from entering the winner’s circle as the Indonesian standout flabbergasted the Filipino fan-favorite with his proficiency on the mat to cruise to a unanimous decision victory. 

Smoothly scoring takedowns against his Filipino foe, Rahardian maneuvered Toquero effortlessly on the ground and then fished for the finish with several submission attempts. 

Although Rahardian remains undefeated in his prizefighting career, he had to squeeze himself through the eye of a needle to get his fifth-straight pro win in the second and third rounds as Toquero tried to pull off last-minute rallies. 

Despite obviously reeling in pain due to Toquero’s desperate knee shots to the body and head, Rahardian managed to keep his opponent at bay by pacifying him on the mat until the final bell.

In other contests at ONE: KINGS OF DESTINY, Singapore’s Christian Lee (6-1) returned to his winning ways by thwarting Wan Jian Ping of China at 4:15 of the first round with ground-and-pound. 

Meanwhile, Xie Bin (3-2) of China is now riding high on a two-fight winning streak by submitting Cambodia’s Chan Rothana (4-3) with d’arce choke at 1.46 of the second stanza. 

Brazilian grappling prodigy Michelle Nicolini (4-1) spoiled the ONE Championship return of Irina Mazepa (2-1), submitting the feared Russian kickboxer with a limb-snapping armbar in the first round.

Nicolini wasted no time in the stand-up department, immediately shooting for a takedown and driving Mazepa to the canvas. From there, she utilized her submission expertise to power through a rancorous armbar at the 2:11 mark of the opening salvo. 

ONE: Kings of Destiny kicked off with a 3-round strawweight encounter, where Robin Catalan (6-2) notched a split decision victory over fellow Filipino warrior and promotion tenderfoot Jeremy “The Jaguar” Miado (6-1). – Rappler.com

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