Pacio retains ONE Strawweight title in all-Filipino brawl
MANILA, Philippines – The Filipino fighters put up a show as Joshua "Passion" Pacio and 3 others scored impressive wins in ONE: Masters of Fate on Friday, November 8, at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Team Lakay's Pacio (15-3) kept his stable within the championship realm as he forced Filipino wushu champion Rene "The Challenger" Catalan (6-3) to tap out in the 2nd round via arm triangle choke to retain his ONE Strawweight title.
THE KING DEFENDS HIS CROWN— ONE Championship (@ONEChampionship) November 8, 2019
Team Lakay phenom Joshua Pacio stops the streaking Rene Catalan with a Round 2 arm-triangle choke to retain his ONE Strawweight World Title!#WeAreONE #ONEChampionship #MastersOfFate pic.twitter.com/wYPFL4dKG5
Both Filipino brawlers exchanged blows from the get-go. Pacio connected a spinning back kick that rattled Catalan, then scored a takedown that showcased their grappling prowess.
The 40-year-old fighter answered with a heel hook attempt, but the champion slipped away and pounded Catalan on the ground before the bell rang.
Pacio landed some kicks at the start of the 2nd round before bringing the fight to the canvas yet again. But this time, Pacio positioned himself on the right spot, leading to the winning submission attempt.
"The game plan is Round 1 I will feel him with the striking and if I feel that I can take him down, I'll do it," said Pacio after the all-Filipino brawl.
The 23-year-old champion successfully reclaimed his title last April after a stunning KO victory against Yosuke Saruta.
"For me, I'm the champion and my job is to keep on training and level up and wait for the next opponent and defend [the belt]," he added.
Folayang vs Tsogookhuu
Meanwhile, Eduard "Landslide" Folayang (22-8) ended his skid and got back on the winning track as he outlasted Mongolian fighter Amarsanaa "Spear" Tsogookhuu (6-2) via a Round 2 technical decision.
Filipino hero Eduard Folayang gets the unanimous nod over Amarsanaa Tsogookhu after an unintentional clash of heads prompts a technical decision. @efolayang #WeAreONE #ONEChampionship #MastersOfFate pic.twitter.com/7iMsiLmFFD— ONE Championship (@ONEChampionship) November 8, 2019
Coming from a disappointing loss against MMA superstar Eddie Alvarez last August, Folayang had to settle for a shortened decision victory as he suffered a cut below his left eye after an accidental headbutt.
Despite the anticlimactic result, Folayang still entertained the crowd and pummeled his Mongolian foe with strong kicks to the leg and body.
The former ONE Lightweight champion sustained his explosive striking in the 2nd round before dropping to the ground due to the accidental foul.
Folayang broke a two-match skid as he also lost to Japanese grappler Shinya Aoki last March via submission.
Eustaquio vs Tauru
Geje "Gravity" Eustaquio (13-8) did not disappoint the crowd this time, firing Team Lakay's signature spinning back kick to score a redemption TKO victory in a rematch against Toni "Dynamite" Tauru (11-8-1).
Eustaquio, who formerly held the ONE Flyweight title, tapped out against Tauru in 2016 and also came from a knockout loss in front of the Filipino crowd last August.
Tauru gave Eustaquio a scare in the opening round as he tried to lock in a rear-naked choke, but the former Filipino champ muscled his way out and turned things around.
Even with a huge height disparity, Eustaquio successfully covered every inch and landed clean blows that kept his Finnish opponent away from his grappling territory in the 2nd round.
While Tauru seemed to forget his game plan, the 30-year-old Benguet native sustained his aggressiveness in the final round before eventually landing a classic spinning back kick to the body that made Tauru gasp for some air.
Catalan vs Balart
Earlier, Rene's younger brother Robin "The Ilonggo" Catalan (10-6-0) kicked off the Filipinos' campaign with a highlight reel as he sent his Cuban foe Gustavo "El Gladiador" Balart (8-4-0) to sleep 4:43 in the 2nd round with a lethal kick to the head.
Catalan utilized his striking superiority and quickly bombarded his foe with punches and knees in an explosive 1st round. Balart, though, successfully threw Catalan to the ground, but the Filipino Muay Thai champ managed to escape.
The Cuban wrestler got more aggressive in the 2nd round, but botched every successful takedown. Catalan saw an opening with less than a minute remaining and landed a clean right head kick as Balart tried to close their distance.
Strawweight World Championship
Joshua "The Passion" Pacio (PHI) def. Rene "The Challenger" Catalan (PHI) via Round 2 submission (2:29, arm-triangle choke)
Eduard "Landslide" Folayang (PHI) def. Amarsanaa "Spear" Tsogookhuu (MON) via technical decision
Catchweight (68.0 kg) Muay Thai
Sangmanee "The Million Dollar Baby" Sathian MuayThai (THA) def. Azize "The Magician" Hlali (MOR) via UD
Geje "Gravity" Eustaquio (PHI) def. Toni "Dynamite" Tauru (FIN) via Round 3 knockout (2:11)
Stamp Fairtex (THA) def. Bi "Killer Bee" Nguyen (VIE/USA) via UD
"The Underdog" Li Kai Wen (CHN) def. Paul "The Great King" Lumihi (INA) via Round 1 knockout (2:39)
Yoshitaka "Nobita" Naito (JPN) def. Pongsiri "The Smiling Assassin" Mitsatit (THA) via UD
Bantamweight Muay Thai
Kongsak "Left Savage" PK.Saenchaimuaythaigym (THA) def. Han Zi Hao (CHN) via UD
Robin "The Ilonggo" Catalan (PHI) def. Gustavo "El Gladiador" Balart (CUB) via Round 2 knockout (4:43)
Bantamweight Muay Thai
Tukkatatong Petpayathai (THA) def. Hiroaki "Kaibutsukun" Suzuki (JPN) via SD
Kim "The Fighting God" Jae Woong (KOR) def. Rafael "Indio" Nunes (BRA) via Round 3 TKO (0:38)
Kim Kyu Sung (KOR) def. Akihiro "Superjap" Fujisawa (JPN) via Round 1 knockout (1:08)
Roshan Mainam (IND) def. Khon Sichan (CAM) via Round 1 submission (3:22, arm lock)