Belingon clinches ONE crown, Folayang avenges home loss
MANILA, Philippines – It's a clean sweep for Team Lakay yet again.
Kevin "The Silencer" Belingon outclassed two-division champion Martin Nguyen to capture the ONE interim bantamweight championship via unanimous decision at ONE: Reign of Kings at the Mall of Asia Arena, Friday, July 27.
Belingon punched his way to appease the scorecards with a 4-punch flurry early in the final round. Nguyen got aggressive with a takedown but was smartly countered by "The Silencer." The Vietnamese-Australian repeatedly went for the takedown, all to no effect to Belingon as time expired.
The Team Lakay star opened the 4th with a flying kick to Nguyen's dome at the 3:20 mark. Nguyen tried to go for a takedown with a minute left, but Belingon wriggled free and responded with a kick to the abdomen.
Nguyen hit Belingon down low in the final 5 seconds of the 3rd round, which clearly wracked the Filipino in pain. Prior to the low blow, Nguyen was getting pockmarked with sitff strikes from Belingon, including his deadly spinning back kick to the face at the 1:40 mark.
Nguyen also hit Belingon with an accidental headbutt early in the bout, but "The Silencer" quickly shook it off. Both fighters highlighted the first two rounds with numerous narrow misses and counters from strikes.
Belingon remains a challenger to injured ONE Bantamweight World Champion Bibiano Fernandes.
Another Team Lakay standout put on a show as Eduard Folayang avenged his last loss at home against Nguyen, winning by unanimous decision over erstwhile undefeated Russian Aziz Pahrudinov.
Although Pahrudinov appeared dominant with his grappling game, Folayang stood his ground and survived through his kicking mastery.
Pahrudinov took Folayang to the ground for much of the first round, where the Russian clearly gained the upper hand.
The Filipino favorite rebounded well in Round 2, employing great counter takedowns and stiff kicks, including the Lakay staple spinning back kick.
Team Lakay's 22-year-old hotshot Joshua "The Passion" Pacio made quick work of Thailand's Pongsiri Mitsatit, winning by submission in the 1:22 mark of Round 1 in the final bout of the pre-show.
Pacio's superb grappling put him in the driver's seat for the entire bout. Pinpoint punches and elbows gave "The Passion" an opening to go behind Mitsatit. Pacio then grabbed the Thai fighter's arms and yanked them upward across his own back, forcing a quick tap-out.
Post-fight, Pacio christened his improvised submission as "The Passion Lock," much to the approval of the passionate Pinoy crowd.
Also, 51-year-old legend Renzo Gracie made a successful comeback to the cage with a second-round submission victory over Pancrase icon Yuki Kondo.
Filipino Rene Catalan also edged out Indonesian Stefer Rahardian in the pre-show with a unanimous decision.
FULL CARD RESULTS
Kevin Belingon (PHI) def. Martin Nguyen (VIE-AUS) via UD
Shinya Aoki (JPN) def. Shannon Wiratchai (THA) via Rd. 1 stoppage (2:50)
Renzo Gracie (BRA) def. Yuki Kondo (JPN) via Rd. 2 submission (3:20)
Eduard Folayang (PHI) def. Aziz Pahrudinov (RUS) via UD
Garry Tonon (USA) def. Rahul Raju (IND) by Rd. 3 submission (1:33)
Chris Ngimbi (DRC) def. Armen Petrosyan (ITA) via SD
Panicos Yusuf (CYP) def. Han Zi Hao (CHN) via UD
Joshua Pacio (PHI) def. Pongsiri Mitsatit (THA) via Rd. 1 submission (1:22)
Chamuakthong Fightermuaythai (THA) def. Brown Pinas (NET) via UD
Rene Catalan (PHI) def. Stefer Rahardian (IND) via UD