Issue of February 4, 2018
Mt. Province

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Eustaquio shares ONE belt to supportive Filipino fans
by Ofelia C. Empian

INTERIM CHAMPION -- Team Lakay’s Geje Eustaquio overwhelmed Kairat Akhmetov to capture the ONE interim flyweight champion during the main event of ONE: Global Superhereos at SM Mall of Asia Arena on Friday night. Eustaquio will soon face ONE flyweight champion Adriano Moraes to unify the belt. -- ONE Photo

It took five rounds of action and a unanimous decision from all three judges to propel Team Lakay’s Geje Eustaquio as ONE interim flyweight world champion against Kairat Akhmetovin the main event of the ONE 69:Global Superheroes at the Mall of Asia Arena on Jan. 26.

“I’m proud to represent this country all over the world; this world champion came from a third world country. This is ours, it’s not mine to take,” Eustaquio said before a supportive hometown crowd.

The first round opened with both fighters on a stand-up match as Akhmetov took it to the ground, threatening with a rear naked choke. Eustaquio slipped through, ending on top exploding elbows to Akhmetov and ending the round.

The succeeding rounds went on, with fight fans witnessing mostly stand-up fights with kicks and jabs thrown in by the resilient fighters.

Akhmetov cornered Eustaquio on round three with a deep guillotine choke but the latter survived the remaining seconds. Eustaquio also attempted a guillotine on Akhmetov but to no avail on round four.

The last round saw both fighters showing signs of exhaustion but both were determined to push through as exchanges of kicks and punches were seen, particularly from Eustaquio with Akhmetov visibly shaken twice from his jabs. Akhmetov then dove in for another submission attempt on the ground, ending the round on top while Eustaquio fired elbows from the bottom.

Reigning ONE flyweight champion Adriano Moraes, who also fought and won against Eustaquio in 2014, congratulated the Igorot fighter after watching on the sidelines during the whole fight.

Eustaquio now moves up with 10-6-0 win-loss-draw record, redeeming himself from last year’s split decision loss from Akhmetov, who scaled down with 21-2-0 record.

It was not a good start for the year for another Team Lakay fighter, April Osenio, as she succumbed to the hands of undefeated Jomary Torres via knockout in the 40 seconds of the first round.

Osenio first made the offense when the fight quickly went to the mat, attempting for an arm bar but Torres, trying to remove Osenio’s tight clutch, was quick to be on her feet and avoided it, instead slamming Osenio on the ground and finishing off with ground and pound with the referee interfering.

Torres now stands with four victories.

The Team Lakay fighter, who suffered three successive losses from her previous fights, now stands with two wins and four losses. 

For Edward Kelly, it took a combination of two punches and one head kick to end his fight against Cambodian Meas Meu in a knockout by 21 seconds in the first round.

Team Lakay fighters quickly got their spirits up with the electrifying win of the 33-year old Kelly, who has scaled up his record to 10-4-0. The 27-year old Meu, meanwhile, got a first taste of loss from the fight with 5-1-0 in his record.

Riding high from Kelly’s win, Joshua Pacio also proved his mettle on the ground as he successfully dismantled China’s Lan Ming Qiang via rear naked choke in the last minute of round one.

Pacio was quick to take it to the ground with his impressive ground control with Qiang barely holding on in the defensive against the former’s vicious jabs and elbows. The Team Lakay fighter transitioned and quickly took the back of Qiang for the choke, who was forced to tap out.

Pacio now stands with 11-2-0 record. 

Another Igorot fighter Eric Kelly, meanwhile, suffered his fourth successive loss in the hands of Rafael Nunes via D’Arce choke, with his record dropping to 12-5-0.

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High CARAA 2018 turnout seen despite grenade blast

Kelly’s 21–second KO is fastest in ONE FW

Tam TKOs Mexican opponent in Canada

ASEAN–like security up for CARAA 2018

BBEAL action resumes Feb 10

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