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Folayang upbeat on chances vs Aoki in trilogy bout

With not only his record against Aoki on the line but also his entire career, Folayang knows just how much is at stake when they enter the cage next week......»»

Category: sportsSource: philstar philstarApr 22nd, 2021

Folayang submits to Aoki anew in third meeting

His third loss in a row, Folayang submitted to his fellow ONE lightweight titlist in the first round in their trilogy bout......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 29th, 2021

Team Lakay s Folayang to dedicate trilogy bout vs Aoki to OFWs

Knowing the numbers of Filipinos who are in the US as migrants and overseas workers, Folayang is eager to dedicate the fight and hopefully bring home the win for them......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 25th, 2021

Folayang confident of victory over legend Aoki in 3rd bout

Multiple-time former ONE Lightweight World Champions Eduard “Landslide” Folayang and Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki will settle the score once and for all, when they meet for the third and perhaps final time in their storied rivalry. The two veterans will square off in a trilogy bout at “ONE on TNT IV,” which broadcasts live from the Singapore Indoor Stadium in Singapore on Wednesday, April 28 (Thursday, April 29 in Asia)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsApr 20th, 2021

Eduard Folayang: When an underdog finally became a world champion

In the five years that I was with the ABS-CBN Sports website, I was fortunate enough to have covered quite a number of memorable sports moments, so when I was asked to write about which was the most memorable for me, it was tough to narrow it down to just one single coverage. I could have written about Letran’s momentous upset of a dynasty-seeking San Beda in the NCAA Season 91 Finals, or I could have written about the Philippine Azkals making history by clinching a spot in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.  Being an MMA fan, I could have written about getting to be Octagon-side for the UFC’s first and only trip to Manila, which was indeed a dream come true for me.  When I think about it however, the coverage that sticks with me to this day, even four years later, was being cage-side, just inches away from Eduard  “Landslide” Folayang as he pummeled Shinya Aoki to become the ONE Lightweight World Champion in Singapore back in 2016.  I tell people about that night all the time, and I believe I’ll continue to do so for the rest of my life.  A Fan First As I mentioned earlier, I’m an MMA fan. In fact, being a fan was actually how I eventually got into sports writing.  During my first year or so with ABS-CBN, I got wind of a show on Balls Channel entitled “The Takedown” which was, you guessed it, about the UFC. Immediately, I knew that I wanted to be a part of that show, in any capacity. I even offered to research or write for free, LOL.  While I never did get to work on the show (because unfortunately, it lasted only a few episodes), I did get to make some connections (shoutout to Sir Lori, Ms. Jo, and Ms. Anna!) which eventually landed me a gig as a UFC writer for the Balls Channel Website. During that time, I got to meet and interview stars like BJ Penn, Alexander Gustafsson, Urijah Faber, Cung Le, and even Arianny Celeste. For an MMA fan like me, it was like working a dream job. It was a pretty sweet gig.  Eventually, that job with the Balls Channel Website would lead me to a spot on the ABS-CBN Sports Website which was launched in 2015. By 2016, I had started covering Asia-based MMA promotion ONE Championship quite a bit because ABS-CBN had signed a broadcast deal with them, and because ONE had a ton of homegrown Pinoy fighters on their roster, most notably Folayang and the Team Lakay guys.  Folayang, whose contract with ONE expired in March of 2016, re-signed with the promotion and returned to action in August, defeating Adrian Pang by Unanimous Decision in Macau. That win over Pang earned Folayang the biggest bout of his career at that point: a title shot against reigning champion Aoki.  When I learned of that title fight, I was very excited for Folayang, but had little expectations for his chances, being that Aoki was a legend in the sport.  Best Seat in the House Eduard Folayang finally getting to fight for a world championship was a huge deal for Filipino MMA fans, especially those that had followed the Baguio-based star’s career since his days in the URCC. The Pinoy star was on ONE’s first ever event, but could never seem to gain enough momentum to compete for a world title, until that point.  That November night in Singapore, all the years of work sacrifice that Folayang had put in during his nine-year MMA career would finally pay off.  This was only my second time to cover a ONE event overseas, so apart from having to write stories, I also had to take pictures. Learning from my past mistakes, I asked if I could have a spot cage-side so that I could take some at least decent photos. Thankfully, the ONE people agreed and gave me a spot just beside one of the judges’ tables.  I had the best seat in the house.  Now, as I said, I had tapered my expectations for the fight. I had seen what Aoki could do in the cage. I’ve seen the guy break peoples’ bones before, so honestly, I was just hoping that he wouldn’t injure Folayang. Our guy was the underdog heading into this fight, no doubt about it.  Of course, as a Filipino and as a fan I was hoping for a massive upset. The beautiful thing about MMA is anything can happen.  Shock The World This was legitimately the first time that I felt nervous covering a fight. It’s like that feeling you have when your favorite basketball team is in a close game with just seconds left.  That first round was a frigging whirlwind of emotions if you’re a Pinoy MMA fan. It looked like Aoki was within moments of being able to submit Folayang on multiple occasions.  The second round was a little bit more relaxed for Folayang, especially since he had been able to survive Aoki’s opening round grappling blitz. It looked like he was a bit more confident and he started to throw some of his trademark spinning kicks and elbows.  A miscalculated flying knee attempt led to another Aoki takedown, but this time around, Folayang appeared a little more calm and relaxed under the pressure.  Late in the round, Folayang began to attack Aoki’s torso with punches and kicks, and it looked like it had the Japanese legend a bit winded. The tide had shifted.  Heading into the third round, there was a different feeling in the air. It felt like Aoki was done, and it felt like Folayang knew it.  In the opening seconds of that fateful third frame, Folayang knew exactly what Aoki was going to do and had an answer for it. Aoki shot in for a takedown, and Folayang countered it with a jumping knee to the jaw.  For a brief second, Folayang was on his behind, but managed to outmuscle Aoki and deliver another vicious knee.  “Oh sh*t!” I yelled internally while scrambling to take photos of the ensuing beatdown.  Folayang turned Aoki over and began to connect with punch after unanswered punch.  Without taking my eye away from my camera’s viewfinder, I started yelling for Folayang to finish it.  Folayang continued to punish Aoki with piston-like punches as the Singapore Indoor Stadium began to erupt.  For what felt like an eternity, referee Yuji Shimada watched as Folayang unloaded nine years worth of heartbreak and frustration into a ground-and-pound sequence.  And then, it was over.  There was a new lightweight king.  AND NEW! EDUARD FOLAYANG STOPS SHINYA AOKI IN ROUND 3! — Santino Honasan???? (@honasantino) November 11, 2016     The Landslide Reigns As much as I would have wanted to keep it cool, I started to freak out. I looked to my right and saw my fellow Pinoy journalists doing the same, one was even standing on the table, cheering the new world champion on.  At that point, I had watched UAAP championships, NCAA championships, even some boxing world championships, but this one was different. I knew what Folayang had gone through. I knew that the odds were stacked against him.  As the confetti began to rain down and the celebration inside the ring continued, I recomposed myself and started to take pictures again. I wanted to be able to capture this moment.  After the official decision and the post-fight interview, I remember calling out to Folayang so that I could take a photo of him with his shiny new toy.  I’ve gotten to witness other members of Team Lakay become champions since then. I’ve been blessed enough to see Geje Eustaquio, Kevin Belingon and Joshua Pacio all become titleholders within a single year. While getting to see Team Lakay draped in gold to end 2018 was definitely a sight to behold, being there cage side as ‘Manong Ed’ realized a life-long dream was definitely an experience that I won’t soon forget.  Folayang's title win wasn't Team Lakay's first world champmionship, and it isn't the last. For me however, I think it's the most important, because it showed that no matter how many times you fall, you can still find your way to the top.  Everyone loves a good underdog story.  -- Santino Honasan has served as a sub-section editor for ABS-CBN Sports' website since 2015. He is among thousands of ABS-CBN employees who will be retrenched on August 31, 2020. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 29th, 2020

WHAT IF: Eduard Folayang had stopped Eddie Alvarez back in 2019?

In August of 2019, the Mall of Asia Arena in Metro Manila played host to arguably one of the biggest matches in ONE Championship lightweight history.  In one corner was Filipino mixed martial arts icon and hometown favorite Eduard “The Landslide” Folayang, a two-time ONE Lightweight World Champion who was looking to bounce back after dropping the title to Japanese legend Shinya Aoki in Japan earlier that year.  Standing in the opposite corner was American star Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez, a former UFC and Bellator Lightweight Champion and one of ONE’s biggest acquisitions in recent memory. Like Folayang, Alvarez was also looking to get back on track after a disappointing KO loss to Timofey Nastyukhin in his ONE debut.  Considered a dream match by ONE Championship fans, Folayang versus Alvarez was billed as East versus West. One of ONE’s pioneers against one of ONE’s newest stars.  As much as the storylines made the match very intriguing, the stakes were quite high as well.  With the semifinals of the then-ongoing ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix doomed by injuries, the Folayang-Alvarez bout was elevated to Grand Prix semifinals status, meaning that the winner would go on to face Turkish knockout artist Saygid “Dagi” Guseyn Arslanaliev in the Finals at ONE: CENTURY.  For Folayang, it was a step towards reclaiming the title that he held at the start of the year. For Alvarez, it was a way to erase the memory of his bitter debut loss and also a step closer towards capturing his third major world championship.  While the Folayang-Alvarez was the third-to-the last bout on the bill, for many of the Pinoy fans in attendance at the MOA Arena that night, it sure felt like the main event.  From the opening bell, the crowd was buzzing, anxious to see of their hometown hero could pull off the massive victory.  Chants of “Folayang! Folayang!” rang through MoA Arena just seconds before the Pinoy connected on a solid counter left hook that definitely got the American star’s attention.  After a flurry of kicks from Folayang, the briefly fell into a nervous silence as Alvarez caught a leg kick and managed to get Folayang to the ground before trapping him in a standing guillotine.  Folayang simply shrugged off the half-hearted submission attempt, much to the delight of the partisan-Pinoy crowd. So far so good for Team Philippines.  A flying knee from Alvarez collided with a spinning back kick from Folayang, which elicited some oohs and ahhs from the crowd, which was ready to go off as soon as their bet landed something big.  Folayang began to pick up steam as he launched strike after strike, throwing kicks, punches, and elbows. It was clear that the Team Lakay star was in control of the stand-up aspect of the fight.  Then, at the 3:37 mark of the first round, the big strike that the fans were waiting for finally came. Folayang, with his massive tree-trunk legs, whipped a right low kick that connected on Alvarez’s left leg, sending the American down to the mat. The way Alvarez sat back down, it looked like he was hurt.  Sensing blood in the water, Folayang went for the kill and began dropping fists as Alvarez tried to defend himself. A failed armbar attempt from Alvarez forced Folayang to reposition himself, moving into side control while still throwing hammerfist after hammerfist.  Then, all of a sudden, Alvarez managed to slip his right hand in between Folayang’s legs and then flip the Pinoy over. Just like that, it was Alvarez who was on top.  Unlike his Pinoy opponent however, Alvarez remained calm and slowly transitioned into full mount. Making things worse, Folayang, likely looking to prevent and ground and pound damage, turned and gave up his back.  Almost immediately, Alvarez sinked his hooks in and flattened Folayang out before locking in a rear naked choke and forcing the Pinoy to tap out.  While he did win, Alvarez would miss out on the Finals anyway after an injury would force him to withdraw as well. As a result, Dagi ended up facing - and losing to - reigning ONE Lightweight World Champion Christian Lee.  Folayang was offered the Finals spot against Dagi, but last-minute visa issues would prevent him from being able to step up.  The loss was quite a painful one to swallow, not just for Folayang, but also for the fans.  Folayang admitted after the fight that he had rushed to get the finish, causing him to be a bit careless and make some costly mistakes.  "I was too eager to get the finish, and I think that’s the mistake, I became impatient, and I wanted to finish him as soon as possible but it didn’t go that way, so, that happened," Folayang explained.  But WHAT IF Folayang hadn’t rushed? Close your eyes and imagine:  After chopping Alvarez down with the leg kick at the 3:37 mark, Folayang pounced and picked his spots, landing some good shots to the head, enough to stun the American and force the referee to step in and stop the fight.  Or, what if instead of pouncing, Folayang allowed the visibly hurt Alvarez to get back up and from there, continued to punish The Underground King’s leg (or legs) en route to a TKO finish.  Folayang would have booked his ticked to the ONE Lightweight Grand Prix Finals. More importantly, Folayang would have been able to add Alvarez to the name of legend’s he’s beaten, and it would have skyrocketed his stock to even greater heights.  Would he have been able to defeat Dagi in the Finale? Of course it was very much possible. At the rate Dagi was knocking guys out up to that point, Folayang would have likely been considered an underdog, but a high-level striker like Folayang is never without his chances.  If Folayang had been able to get past Dagi as well, it would set up a very intriguing matchup between himself and Lee, which could have been a good matchup for the Pinoy star.  Now, Folayang finds himself once again looking to bounce back following a close loss to Dutch striker Pieter Buist.  Still hungry for a third run as world champion, Folayang will need to work his way back to the top of the division.  Who knows? Maybe two or three wins in, Folayang could find himself standing opposite Alvarez once again, with the chance to re-write history. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 27th, 2020

ONE Championship: Eduard Folayang looking to knock out Eddie Alvarez

Former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang will get a shot at redemption when he takes on his dream opponent, Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez at ONE: DAWN OF HEROES on 2 August at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines.    Folayang relinquished the ONE Lightweight World Championship to Japanese grappling legend Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki at ONE: NEW ERA in March. The Team Lakay athlete will enter the Alvarez bout at a critical time in his career, and a win would likely put him at the front of the line once more for another shot at the belt.    “My journey as a World Champion is like a roller coaster,” said Folayang.    “There are times when I am a World Champion and people look up to me. There are also times when I am defeated, so I will try again to climb the ladder to get the belt back.   “I got it, but lost it again this time. I think the most challenging part is how to get yourself back on the winning track. We are going to start again. That is not something new to us,” he added.     Despite his recent setbacks, Folayang wants to continue to improve his skills and bounce back strong.   “One of the things that I learned in my career so far is to never stop learning and improving as much as possible because you should realize that everyone is aiming to become a [World] Champion,” said Folayang.   “As an athlete, if you start to think that you are good, you will no longer grow. [That is why] as much as possible, I want to learn to be better, sharpen my strengths, and improve my weaknesses.”   Before he puts another digit in the win column though, Folayang will have to go through another former multiple-time World Champion in Alvarez who is in desperate need of a win after losing his ONE debut.   “I think Eddie is a good martial artist – you will not become a World Champion if you don’t have a good approach to being a martial artist,” Folayang said.    “I believe wrestling and boxing are his strengths, but if you’ll look at Eddie’s track record, you will see that almost all his defeats are from high-level strikers – that is his weakness. It’s hard, but I am pushing myself to prepare.”    The Filipino athlete remains optimistic of his chances against the American and is looking to beat him by way of knockout.    “A knockout and submission will always be there if you are in the proper position – that is a given,” he said. “I think it will end in a knockout.”   Fortunately for Folayang, he won’t be facing Alvarez alone as he will have the entire crowd behind him in Manila.   “Having this bout here in the Philippines gives me confidence,” he concluded. “Those are what give me the confidence to face him in this bout – my preparation and the crowd.”   Additionally, ONE Championship is launching special edition merchandise to commemorate the blockbuster Eduard Folayang vs Eddie Alvarez bout which takes place at ONE: DAWN OF HEROES. The commemorative t-shirt will be available for sale at the Mall of Asia Arena on 2 August......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 24th, 2019

Team Lakay stars shine as S+A brings back ONE Championship fights

Filipino warriors from Team Lakay will show us how to fight with all heart and might this April as ABS-CBN S+A gives us world-class mixed martial arts (MMA) action from ONE Championship all month. Witness Team Lakay’s rising star Lito “Thunder Kid” Adiwang notch another rousing victory as one of the featured fighters in “ONE Warrior Season 4.” The travel series and talent show hosted by MMA legend Rich Franklin will have its Philippine premiere on Sunday (April 5) from 6 pm to 12 mn, followed by 30-minute telecasts every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday at 9 pm. Adiwang’s first round knockout on Brazilian Alber Correia Da Silva was one of the best moments that season, which aired in February 2019 and was won by Japanese submission specialist Kimihiro Eto.  Thunder Kid’s Team Lakay teammate Joshua “The Passion” Pacio will also take the spotlight as S+A airs “ONE: Roots of Honor” on April 16 at 9 pm.  Pacio redeemed himself in the co-main event, defeating Yosuke Saruta via split decision to take back the ONE Strawweight World Championship. The fight also featured ONE Featherweight World Champion Martin Nguyen, who knocked out former titleholder Narantungalag Jadambaa to extend his reign. On April 17, it’s Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio’s turn to show Filipino courage through his domination of Korean Kim Kyu Sung in their Flyweight World Grand Prix bout in e “ONE: Enter the Dragon.” Fighting alongside the former champion from Team Lakay  in this card were superstars Shinya Aoki and Christian Lee, who figured in a Lightweight World title showdown.  On April 23, watch Danny “The King” Kingad make his presence felt in the MMA world with a split decision win over Australian Reece McLaren in “ONE: Dawn of Heroes,” which also featured legends Demetrious Johnson and Eddie Alvarez. The next day, April 24, see the gallant stand of Filipino fighters Brandon Vera, and Team Lakay’s Kevin Belingon and Kingad in the biggest event in martial arts history, the two-part “ONE: Century” event in Japan. S+A closes the month with “ONE: Masters of Fate” on April 30, which had Filipinos Pacio and Rene Catalan fighting each other in the main event. The Passion won the fight, while other Pinoy fighters like Eduard Folayang, Robin Catalan, and Eustaquio also entering the win column.  Apart from these world-class MMA events, fight fans will also enjoy looking back at other outstanding bouts in “ONE: Championship Classics” every Tuesday at 9:30 pm starting April 14 and never before seen footage and behind-the-scenes moments in “ONE: Official Film” every Saturdays at 9:30 pm beginning April 18.   S+A will also air “ONE: Greatest Rivalries” every Sunday at 9:30 pm starting April 19 and “ONE: Spirit of a Warrior” every Monday at 9 pm beginning April 20. For the latest news in sports, follow @ABSCBNSports on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram or visit sports.abs-cbn.com. For updates, follow @ABSCBNPR on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram or visit abs-cbn.com/newsroom......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 6th, 2020

ABS-CBN S+A to air ONE Championship s best events of 2019

Looking for a fix of your favorite martial arts action during the quarantine period? Not to worry, ABS-CBN S+A has got you covered!  Starting March 27th, ABS-CBN S+A will be re-airing some of the best ONE Championship events from 2019 every Thursday and Friday at 9:00 PM!  Here are some re-airings to watch out for:  ONE: ETERNAL GLORY - Friday, March 27, 9:00 PM On Friday, March 27, relive the exciting first encounter between Team Lakay's Joshua "The Passion" Pacio and Japan's Yosuke Saruta for the ONE Strawweight World Championship in the main event of ONE: ETERNAL GLORY at the Istora Senayan in Jakarta, Indonesia!  Also on the card, future world champion Christian Lee faced off against Team Lakay's Edward Kelly, while Pinoy strawweight Robin Catalan battled hometown hero Stefer Rahardian!    ONE: HERO'S ASCENT - Thursday, April 2, 9:00 PM  On Thursday, April 2nd, witness once again, the intense third-installment of the ONE Flyweight World Championship rivalry between Team Lakay's Geje "Gravity" Eustaquio and Brazil's Adriano "Mikinho" Moraes as they headlined ONE: HERO'S ASCENT at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines!  Also on the card, Team Lakay's Danny Kingad faced Japan's Tatsumitsu Wada in a flyweight bout, and former ONE Featherweight World Champion Honorio "The Rock" Banario faced Hawaiian Lowen Tynanes in a ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix Quarterfinal bout.    ONE: A NEW ERA - Friday, April 3, 9:00 PM On Friday, April 3rd, take a look back at ONE Championship's historic maiden trip to The Land of The Rising Sun, for ONE: A NEW ERA at the Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo, Japan! The super-stacked card featured a ONE Lightweight World Championship rematch between Team Lakay's Eduard "Landslide Folayang and Japanese MMA legend Shinya Aoki, as well as a ONE Bantamweight World Title rematch between Team Lakay's Kevin "The Silencer" Belingon and Brazilian star Bibiano "The Flash" Fernandes.  Plus, Angela Lee challenged Xiong Jing Nan for the ONE Women's Strawweight World Chamionship, Aung La N Sang defended his ONE Middleweight World Championship, and American stars Demetrious Johnson and Eddie Alvarez both made their ONE Championship debuts.  You can also binge-watch Rich Franklin's ONE Warrior Series on these dates! For more schedules and announcements, stay tuned to ABS-CBN S+A channel 17, or head over to sports.abs-cbn.com! .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 26th, 2020

3 key takeaways from ONE: FIRE & FURY

It was another explosive night for ONE Championship as it opened 2020 in the Philippines in the most exciting way possible. On Friday, 31 January, ONE: FIRE & FURY went down in Manila, Philippines with a bang, and the martial arts world was left begging for more action. With another event in the bag, here are three key takeaways from the Mall Of Asia Arena.    Joshua Pacio’s Skills Are Growing At A Blistering Pace Any strawweight who watched Joshua “The Passion” Pacio defend his World Title against Alex “Little Rock” Silva should be concerned, especially with the 24-year-old Filipino closing all the holes in his game.  Pacio looked crisp on the feet as always, but it was his ground game that turned out to be the difference in this match.  The Baguio City native was confident to roll with one of the best grapplers in the organization and, at times, he was even on the offensive, attempting a guillotine choke and a heel hook in the bout.  “Yes I was surprised. We all know the level of Silva’s grappling, so Joshua really surprised me with the confidence that he showed in the bout – he was even the one attacking at times,” Team Lakay coach Mark Sangiao said.  With Pacio picking up confidence on the ground game to compliment his world class striking, the rest of the division looks in trouble.    “Thunder Kid” May Be The Next Big Strawweight Lito “Thunder Kid” Adiwang said in the past that entertaining fans is just as important as winning.  On Friday, he proved it was not just lip-service.  Adiwang was a burning ball of energy and then some as he needed just one round to dispatch Pongsiri “The Smiling Assassin” Mitsatit in the lead card of the night.  The 26-year-old rocked his Thai counterpart early on before raining down heavy ground and pound from the mount. Though Mitsatit survived the initial onslaught, Adiwang still finished the bout in style as he locked on a kimura and forced the submission.    The Lightweight Division Keeps Getting Deeper  Eduard “Landslide” Folayang found out firsthand how difficult his climb back to the pinnacle of the ONE Lightweight division will be after absorbing a razor-thin split decision loss to Pieter “The Archangel” Buist in the co-main event of the evening.  At age 36, Folayang has been adamant in saying he still wants to regain his World Title, and for two rounds he looked good against the bigger Dutchman.  All it took, though, was one well-timed head kick from Buist early in the third to change the direction of the match for good as the Combat Brothers standout turned the bout to his favor and later stole the victory.  Aside from Buist, who targets a showdown with ONE Lightweight World Champion Christian “The Warrior” Lee, the division also boasts top talent like Saygid Guseyn “Dagi”  Arslanaliev, Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez, Lowen Tynanes, and Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki for starters. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 3rd, 2020

ONE Championship: Andun pa yung fire - Eduard Folayang highly motivated as he begins his comeback

After absorbing back-to-back defeats for just the second time in his professional mixed martial arts career, Filipino star Eduard “Landslide” Folayang once again finds himself on the comeback trail as he tries to once again have his hand raised in victory inside the ONE Circle.  The former two-time ONE Lightweight World Champion dropped the title to Shinya Aoki in the first defense of his second run as champion back in March, and then followed that up with a loss to Eddie Alvarez in August.  At 34 years of age, there really isn’t much left for Folayang to prove. A professional since 2007, Folayang has a respectable 21-8 professional record which includes championships in regional promotions and two world championship runs under the ONE banner. As it stands, he is already the face of Filipino MMA.  If he were to, say, hang his gloves up and dedicate his life to coaching future champions from Team Lakay, it’s highly unlikely that anyone would take it against him.  Yet, Folayang is gearing up for a return to action at ONE: Masters of Fate this coming Friday, November 8th at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Manila, Philippines. He faces Mongolian up-and-comer Amarsanaa “Spear” Tsogookhu in the co-main event. When asked what keeps him motivated, even after back-to-back losses, the former Philippine Wushu National Team Member and multiple-time SEA Games gold medalist says that he believes there’s still a lot for him to show.  “Yung pakiramdam na alam mong mayroon ka pang potential, hindi mo pa nai-uunleash yung full potential mo, yun yung parang nagpapalakas sa akin, na hindi pa dapat mag-give up, kasi still, andun parin yung fire na mag-rise up again,” Folayang told ABS-CBN Sports. “I think purposely, inallow ni God [yung mga losses ko] para makita ko yung mga areas na kailangan kong ayusin and yung mga pagkakamali talaga na kailangan kong iwasan sa mga future bouts ko.” For Folayang, the Alvarez bout in Manila last August is one that stung quite a bit.  A former UFC and Bellator Lightweight World Champion, Alvarez’s signing with ONE was met with lots of hype and anticipation. As early as then, a potential matchup with Folayang was already something that fans of the Asian martial arts promotion were intrigued to see.  When the bout was finally going to take place, it was billed as a must-see matchup between two of the division’s biggest stars.  Indeed, the bout lived up to the hype as it included a little bit of everything that a fight fan would want to see. Folayang, a striking expert, was the more aggressive fighter on the feet and was able to use his best weapon - his tree-trunk legs - to do damage and chop Alvarez down.  Once he had dropped “The Underground King” Folayang went in for the kill, and that eagerness to get the finish was what ultimately led to the Pinoy hero’s downfall in the match.  While obviously hurt by the chopping leg kick he had absorbed just moments earlier, Alvarez remained composed as he tried to survive the landslide of strikes coming from Folayang. The American found his opening and flipped Folayang over for the reversal before taking the Filipino’s back and finally getting the Rear Naked Choke Submission, forcing the hometown bet to tap out.  “Gina-gauge ko yung sarili ko eh, alam mo yun? Yung expectations ko sa kanya, hindi ganun eh. Sobrang taas, tapos nung laglaban kami, naramdaman ko, pero siyempre, nakalimutan ko siguro na magaling din siya sa ground, or either nang-gigil ako na gusto kong tumayo ulit para tapusin na namin yung laban sa taas,” Folayang explained.  “Siguro yun yung naging mga pagkakamali ko that time, na ayaw ko maulit. Hindi ako naging composed sa sarili ko, nakalimutan ko na yung laban ay mixed martial arts, kung saan lahat ng angle, kapag dun ka kinuha, kahit nananalo ka na sa isang area, hindi yun yung laban eh. Yung laban ay yung kung natapos na. Siguro yun yung parang nakita ko na nagkamali ako,” he added.  Had Folayang won, he would have advanced to the Finals of the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix at ONE: Century in Tokyo, Japan.  Alvarez ultimately pulled out after an injury had barred him from competing in the finale against Turkey’s Saygid Guseyn Arslanaliev. Arslanaliev ultimately lost to Christian Lee, who stepped in as Alvarez’s replacement.  Throughout his career, Folayang has had some rather heartbreaking losses, but the Alvarez one has to be up there as one of the most, especially since he was quite dominant in the opening moments of the bout.  Folayang admits that it took quite a bit for him to get over that.  “Hindi [ako agad naka-get over] eh, kasi everytime, may makaka-salubong na na ireremind sayo, ‘Sayang!’ yung ganun,” But it was also that bout against Alvarez - specifically that sequence that nearly ended the fight in his favor - that somehow made him realize what he is still capable of.   “Dun ko din talaga nakita na, kung yung ganung level ni Alvarez, sa kalakasan niya, nasurpass ko, I think mayroon pa talaga eh. Hindi ko pa talaga nare-reach yung full potential ko eh, may mas maipapakita pa ako na mas magandang performance, lalo na kapag idinagdag ko yung mga experience ko na kagaya nung mga ganung experience.” To help move past the loss, Folayang returned to the gym to help his teammates who were getting ready for their big matches in Tokyo.  Hardly taking any damage in the loss to Alvarez, Folayang was pretty much in shape to get back in action, and a small window of opportunity appeared when it was announced that Alvarez had pulled out.  According to ONE Championship Chairman Chatri Sityodtong, Folayang was the first option to replace Alvarez, but with just around two weeks left before fight night, visa issues prevented the Filipino star from stepping in, opening the door for Lee to do so.  “Siyempre, hindi naman natin alam kung ano yung mangyayari, kasi professional na tayo, kailangan lagi parin tayong handa, although siyempre, yung nasa utak natin talaga ay gusto natin lumaban, kaya nagte-training pa din. So nung sinabi yung late replacement kay Dagi, nag-oo ako, pero unfortunately, hindi talaga siguro time,” Folayang said.  The time for Folayang’s comeback, as it turns out, was the month after.  Facing a relatively unknown opponent in Tsogookhu, Folayang has the chance to get back on track and pick up a solid win, but it could also prove to be a high-risk challenge, as Tsogookhu was impressive in his debut against veteran Shannon Wiratchai.  Folayang says that he fully understands the risk behind the fight, but to be able to get back to the top of the division, he must be able to face risk head on.  “Yun yung maganda sa MMA, the more na naiintindihan mo na it’s high risk, alam mo yun. Kasi kahit sabihin mo na more experienced ka, kung mag-commit ka ng single mistake, kakainin ka eh, so, yun. We are fighters, as much as possible, kung sino man yung mag-sstand dun sa way natin, kailangan natin i-face para makabalik tayo doon sa inaasam natin.”   Catch ONE: MASTERS OF FATE live on Friday, November 8th LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23 on LIVESTREAM via the ABS-CBN Sports Facebook Page and on iWant starting at 8:30 PM. ONE: MASTERS OF FATE will also air on Sunday's Best on November 17th, Sunday, at 11:30 PM with local commentatry from Anton Roxas and Theo Castillo  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 7th, 2019

Eddie Alvarez out, ONE Lightweight Champion Christian Lee to face Dagi in ONE Lightweight GP Finals

A major shakeup has been announced with regards to the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix Finals just a couple of weeks before ONE: Century takes place on October 13th in Tokyo, Japan.  Finalist Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez of the USA has been forced to withdraw from the finale against Turkey’s Saygid “Dagi” Guseyn Arslanaliev due to injury, as announced by ONE Championship chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong on social media.  Taking the former UFC and Bellator Lightweight World Champion Alvarez’s place will be none other than the current top dog in the lightweight division, reigning ONE Lightweight World Champion Christian “The Warrior” Lee of Singapore. As of press time, it has not been announced whether Lee's ONE Lightweight World Championship will be on the line.  Lee, 21, is one of the biggest stars out of Singapore, and has been a top contender in ONE for years. The hard-hitting Lee challenged for the ONE Featherweight World Championship back in 2018. In 2019, he made the jump up to lightweight, and in his divisional debut, shocked the world by knocking out Japanese legend Shinya Aoki to become the ONE Lightweight World Champion. Lee was originally slated to face the eventual winner of the lightweight tournament.  Dagi, 24, has been on a remarkable tear in ONE Championship. The Turkish knockout artist announced his arrival as a legitimate contender in the division with a stunning KO victory over Russian Timofey Nastyukhin. Dagi tore through the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix bracket in spectacular fashion, first knocking out Ev Ting in just 25 seconds in the quarterfinals, before doing the same to former title contender Amir Khan in just over two minutes in the semifinals.  According to Sityodtong, he offered the bout to former two-time ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang of the Philippines, but visa issues prevented the fight from being put together.  Lee now joins his older sister and defending ONE Women's Atomweight World Champion Angela "Unstoppable" Lee on Part I of ONE: Century.    Catch ONE: CENTURY in it’s entirety on LIVESTREAMING on Sunday, October 13 starting at 8:00 AM (Part 1) and 4:00 PM (Part 2) via sports.abs-cbn.com/livestream/one and on iWant Sports as well as on the ABS-CBN Sports Facebook Page and the ABS-CBN Sports YouTube Page! Catch ONE: CENTURY Part 2 LIVE at 6:30 PM on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23!   ONE: CENTURY Part 2 will air on Friday, October 18 at 8:30 PM on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23!.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 26th, 2019

ONE Championship: Eduard Folayang believes his style matches up well against Eddie Alvarez

Lightweight stars and former world champions Eduard “Landslide” Folayang of the Philippines and Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez of the United States are set to lock horns in a must-see ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix semi-final matchup at ONE: Dawn of Heroes this coming Friday, August 2nd at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila.    Facing a former UFC and Bellator world champion in Alvarez, Folayang knows that he is up against what could be the biggest challenge of his career, but also believes that his style matches up well with the ultra-aggressive American.    “Yeah, for sure, [my style] matches up well [with his], and kailangan ko pang pinu-in yung mga areas na magiging precise, na magagamit ko against sa kanya,” Folayang told ABS-CBN Sports.    Alvarez is known for his charge-forward brawling style that made him a fan favorite among fans during his runs with North American promotions.    Folayang is a gifted striker who has shown stopping power in the past, most notably his third-round TKO win over Japanese legend Shinya Aoki back in 2016, the win that netted the Pinoy star his first ONE world championship.    One clean shot from either man could spell disaster for the other.    Hard-hitting Russian Timofey Nastyukhin spoiled Alvarez's ONE with a TKO win back in March, and Folayang is looking to do the same.   “I think one of the things that I saw is, halos karamihan ng mga talo ni Eddie Alvarez is more on sa mga high-level strikers, so tine-take into consideration ko yun talaga, and siyempre, depende rin talaga sa kung ano yung magiging gameplan niya eh, kasi gusto niyang manalo eh, ako ganoon dun, so I need to read kung ano yung magiging approach sa laban, kasi alam ng bawat isa sa amin na we are strikers eh, so paano yung adjustment ng bawat isa? I think yun yung isa sa mga titignan ng bawat kampo namin,” Folayang explained.    One area that could prove to be a problem for the Pinoy is the ground game. While Folayang and Team Lakay’s grappling and wrestling have improved dramatically throughout the years, top-notch grapplers have remained to be a problem for the Baguio-based team.    Alvarez, while usually prefers to stand and trade, is also a high-level wrestler and could look to bring the bout to the mat.    “Sa ground game niya, magaling din siya eh, he has proved himself time and time again na talagang may submission and knockout wins din siya, so all-around din well-rounded din siya,” Folayang said.     The 35-year old Baguio City-native is coming off a world title loss to Aoki in their rematch in Japan back in March and is eager to get back on track and begin his hunt for a third world title reign.    With the bout against Alvarez on Friday being a lightweight tournament semi-final, a win for Folayang moves him to the Grand Prix finals and a step closer to challenging for the title again.    “Sa akin, siguro, it motivates me to do well, kasi siyempre, I wasn’t able to defend my belt the last time, I think this is a good opportunity for me to bounce back,” said the two-time champ.    Catch ONE: DAWN OF HEROES on Friday, August 2 LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23 starting at 8:30 PM. Livestream will be available on the ABS-CBN Facebook Page and on iWant  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 1st, 2019

Eduard Folayang and Eddie Alvarez face off at ONE: Dawn of Heroes presser

Filipino mixed martial arts icon and two-time ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang went face to face with former UFC and Bellator Lightweight World Champion Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez of the United States at the official pre-fight press conference for ONE: Dawn of Heroes, Tuesday at the City of Dreams Grand Ballroom in Pasay City.  Folayang and Alvarez are set to face off in a must-see ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix semi-final bout, with the winnner advancing into the finals to face Turkish knockout artist Saygid Guseyn “Dagi” Arslanaliev at ONE: Century in Tokyo, Japan this coming October.  Folayang is coming off a world title loss to Shina Aoki at ONE: A New Era back in March, while Alvarez came up short in his promotional debut against Timofey Nastyukhin on the same card.  “He’s one of those athletes that I spent a lot of time watching before,” Folayang said of Alvarez. “He says this isn’t the right time, but I believe it’s God’s time. It’s a huge honor for me to be able to test my skills against him.” “My preparations have gone well. I lost my belt last March. That chapter of my career has closed. It’s time to write another chapter of my journey,” he added.  “I respect Eduard. I respect everything he’s done not just as a fighter, but also as a human being for his community. This is what this sport is all about. It’s beyond what goes on in the Circle,” said Alvarez. “In the movies, heroes always prevail. The nemesis loses, he goes home and everybody’s happy. Unfortunately, that’s not the story here. You picked the wrong guy at the wrong time. I love you Manila. I respect you Eduard. Let’s have some fun.” In the main event, reigning and defending ONE Featherweight World Champion Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen of Australia puts his title on the line against Japan’s Koyomi “Moushigo” Matsushida.  In the co-main event, England’s Jonathan “The General” Haggerty puts his ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Championship on the line against Thailand’s Rodtang “The Iron Man” Jitmuangnon.  Both ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix semi-finals bouts will also take place, with long-time UFC Flyweight World Champion Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson taking on Japan’s Tatsumitsu “The Sweeper” Wada and Danny “The King” Kingad of the Philippines facing Fil-Australian Reece “Lightning” McLaren.  Also on the card, former ONE Flyweight World Champion Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio of the Philippines faces Yuya “The Little Piranha” Wakamatsu in a ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix alternate bout.  Plus, Former ONE Featherweight World Champion Honorio “The Rock” Banario returns to the ring to face South Korea’s Dae Sung Park, and Edward “The Ferocious” Kelly meets China’s Xie “The Stalker” Bin.    Catch ONE: DAWN OF HEROES on Friday, August 2nd LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23. You can also catch it via LIVE STREAMING on the ABS-CBN S+A Facebook Page and on the iWant app.   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 30th, 2019

ONE Championship: Folayang vs. Alvarez matchup now a ONE Lightweight Grand Prix semifinal bout

As if it wasn't massive enough, the lightweight clash between former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard "Landslide" Folayang of the Philippines and multiple-time lightweight world champion Eddie "The Underground King" Alvarez of the United States at ONE: Dawn of Heroes at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila on Friday, August 2nd now has even more at stake.  Due to an injury that has forced Russian contender Timofey Nastyukhin to withdraw from his ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix semifinals bout against former ONE Featherweight World Champion Honorio "The Rock" Banario of the Philippines, the Folayang-Alvarez matchup has now been elevated to the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix semifinals, as announced by ONE Championship.  This now means that the winner of the must-see lightweight contest will advance to the finals to face Turkish knockout artist Saygid "Dagi" Guseyn Arslanaliev at ONE: Century in Tokyo, Japan this coming October.  The eventual winner of the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix will challenge reigning ONE Lightweight World Champion Christian Lee in the future.  Banario, meanwhile, could remain on the card to face a different opponent, or could be moved to a different card altogether.  Folayang is coming off a first-round submission loss to Shinya Aoki at ONE: A New Era in Tokyo, Japan back in March. Earlier that same evening, Alvarez lost his ONE debut via first-round TKO to Nastyukhin in a ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix quarterfinals bout.    ONE: Dawn of Heroes takes place on Friday, August 2nd at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City. Catch it LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23! .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 15th, 2019

ONE Championship: Motivated Honorio Banario grateful for second chance in Grand Prix

Former ONE Featherweight World Champion Honorio “The Rock” Banario will be getting a second chance at glory when he returns to the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix to face Russian striker Timofey Nastyukhin in the tournament semifinals at ONE: Dawn of Heroes this coming August 2nd in Manila.   It was announced earlier this week that Banario would be stepping in for Hawaiian wrestler Lowen Tynanes, who had to pull out because of a back injury suffered in training, as per ONE Championship Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong.     It was actually Banario who Tynanes defeated in the tournament’s quarterfinals earlier this year to advance.   Now, the Team Lakay star gets another chance in the Grand Prix, and he’s nothing but grateful for the opportunity.   “I would like to thank ONE Championship for giving me another chance,” Banario told ABS-CBN Sports. “To sir Chatri, sir Matt Hume, sir Victor Cui, and the rest of the ONE staff. I am happy and I think I am luck to be back in the Grand Prix.”   It’s not often that second chances come by in tournaments like this, and Banario is making sure that he won’t be wasting the opportunity that is in front of him.   “My last performance was not good,” Banario admitted. “I was lacking explosiveness, speed, and power, so I am trying to improve on those areas for this second chance.”   Banario will be facing a proven lightweight contender in Nastyukhin, who earned his spot in the semifinals after a stunning first-round TKO against the heavily-favored Eddie Alvarez at ONE: A New Era in Tokyo back in March.   The heavy-handed Russian’s resumé reads like a who’s who in the lightweight division and among those he has wins over is none other than Banario’s stablemate and former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard Folayang.   “Timofey is a warrior,” Banario stated. “He has power in both his hands and he is a legit striker.”   “He is powerful and explosive, but I am looking for a way to exploit those traits,” he added.   This will be Banario’s first time back since his loss to Tynanes back in January. Since then, a lot has changed for “The Rock”, including getting married and now, he has a baby on the way.   With a family to provide for, Banario is now motivated and more determined than ever to succeed.   “Ngayon, it’s a very big motivation for me that I have my own family and that a baby is coming,” said Banario. “It is a source of my strength, unlike when I was single na sometimes tinatamad ay pwedeng huminto, pero ngayon, hangga’t kaya pa, I’m going to go forward.”   A win against Nastyukhin will send Banario into the Finals against Turkish knockout artist Saygid Guseyn Aralanaliev.   The winner of the tournament will be crowned the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix champion and will get a shot at the ONE Lightweight World Championship.   ONE: Dawn of Heroes will also feature a number of massive matchups, including a big-time lightweight bout between former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang of the Philippines and multiple-time lightweight world champion Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez of the US, as well as Americian flyweight great Demetrious Johnson versus Japan’s Tatsumitsu Wada and Filipino up-and-comer Danny Kingad vs. former champion Kairat Akhmetov of Kazakhstan in the ONE Flyweight Grand Prix Semifinal matches.   The main event will be a ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Championship bout between champion Jonathan Haggerty of the United Kingdom and challenger Rodtang Jitmuangnon of Thailand.   ONE: Dawn of Heroes takes place on Friday, August 2 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Philippines.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 11th, 2019

Folayang ready for big bout vs Aoki

Filipino mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter Eduard “The Landslide” Folayang said that he would not waste the opportunity to challenge ONE lightweight world champion Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki in ONE: Defending Honor on November 11, .....»»

Category: newsSource:  manilatimes_netRelated NewsSep 30th, 2016

Slumping Eduard Folayang still brushes off retirement talks

Struggling since 2019, Folayang has won only one bout of his last six, but the former ONE lightweight champion believes there is still time to make another run before hanging up his gloves......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 30th, 2021

Fil-Am fighter tops Belarusian

Jackie Buntan made up for the painful loss of countryman Eduard Folayang as the Fil-Am bet bested Belarusian Ekaterina Vandaryeva in a Muay Thai bout of the ONE on TNT IV at the Singapore Indoor Stadium yesterday......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 30th, 2021

Folayang preparing & lsquo;double-time& rsquo; for Japanese legend Aoki

Former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang believes that he has learned a lot from his loss to Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki, and those lessons will be key when they put a lid on their rivalry this Thursday, April 29. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsApr 28th, 2021

Folayang itching to face Aoki for 3rd time

Both former ONE lightweight titlists, Folayang and Aoki have had a storied rivalry with both fighters taking a win each, which resulted in the belt changing hands......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 28th, 2021