'The Rock' KOs Kelly to take ONE FC featherweight crown
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - Two Filipinos entered the cage at the Stadium Putra Saturday night (February 2), but only one emerged as champion.
Honorio Banario knocked out Eric Kelly with a left cross in the fourth round to take the first ONE Fighting Championship featherweight belt in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Both fighters started out timidly, carefully sizing each other up, but it was clear from the outset that Kelly looked to shoot for the takedown while Banario opted to keep the fight at a distance.
With Banario dictating the pace, Kelly looked frustrated as his multiple takedown attempts were repeatedly stuffed by “The Rock,” who was too slippery for Kelly to get a hold of.
Kelly, who walked out to Justin Bieber’s “Never Say Never,” failed to live up to expectations and delivered an underwhelming performance in what could be considered the biggest fight of his career.
In the post fight interview, Banario also expressed shock that “The Natural” wasn't his usual aggressive self.
“I improved my striking and my takedown defense,” said Banario, who scored his second straight TKO win after beating Andrew Benibe last August in Manila to up his record to 8-1 (3 KOs, 5 submissions).
In front of a capacity crowd deep in the heart of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysian homegrown heroes also posted notable victories.
Among them were Adam "Shogun" Shahir Kayoom, who made quick work of his opponent Zuli "The Shark" Silawanto and smoked him in just one round, winning by rear naked choke.
Peter Davis also ended his fight early with a furious display of strikes from the mount position. After his opponent Leo Krishna failed a couple of leg submission attempts, Davis capitalized on the opportunity a few brutal back heel smashes.
Krishna's upper lip was a grotesque image as it was split in two and the cageside physician had to call a halt to the contest.
Davis looked brilliantly effective and really overpowered Krishna in all aspects. With the win, Davis improved to 3-0 in the One FC and continues to ride a hot streak.
In the non-televised undercards, top prospect Gianni Subba was put to the test against Saiful "The Vampire" Merican.
Merican brought the fight straight to the highly touted youngster's grill and had plenty of great moments, but staying true to form, Subba weathered the onslaught and dominated his opponent from the mount position.
In the end, Subba gutted out the victory, pulling an armbar out of nowhere to win by submission.
Lowen Tynanes of the United States overcame some solid kickboxing by Vuyisile Colossa and a nasty gash on his right forehead to eke out fight-ending submission via rear naked choke in round 3.
Tynanes had most of his moments on the ground, while Colossa got the better of the stand-up. Tynanes improves to 4-0 with an impressive victory here over his African foe, including a quality win just recently over Eduard "Landslide" Folayang. He definitely looks to continue moving up the ranks.
Rey "The Punisher" Docyogen put on a dazzling display of high speed kicks, looking much like a mini Bruce Lee against MMA veteran Shinichi "BJ" Kojima.
But the experienced Japanese fighter took the best that Docyogen could dish out and then some.
Docyogen entered the fight with an impressive 10-0 MMA record and was undefeated.
Kojima dealt Docyogen his first loss however, catching the URCC pinweight champion in the 2nd round with a deep guillotine choke.
One FC returns to Singapore in April for another action-packed MMA card. - Rappler.com