SINGAPORE — Confidence is key.
Still smarting from a previous loss, Filipino Kevin Belingon is is eager to put a different ending to his rematch with bantamweight champion Bibiano Fernandes in ONE Championship: Heart of the Lion on Friday at Singapore Indoor Stadium.
It has been two years since Brazilian Fernandes defeated Belingon via submission in the first round of their MMA fight - and the Pinoy warrior has done nothing but get better in the hope of settling the score.
He has since won six successive fights, including two technical knockouts and one via stoppage, to become the interim bantamweight world champion.
“Okay naman ‘yung mindset, handa na lahat,” he said exuding confidence. “One hundred percent ready (na ako).”
“I’m physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually ready sa laban na ‘to,” he continued. “Pinaghirapan ko ‘tong match na ‘to so I’ll do my best to win the fight.”
After the loss, Belingon said he vowed to prove to everyone that it did not crush him.
“I’m very happy to be on this spot and face Bibiano again,” he said smiling. “After ng laban namin noon, talagang na-challenge ako i-improve ‘yung weaknesses ko kaya ‘yun, nagtuluy-tuloy ‘yung panalo.”
“Gusto kong makuha ‘yung undisputed bantamweight belt,” he added.
The 31-year old fighter, who immediately went back to the drawing board instead of sulking, shared how he prepared for the rematch.
“Sinasabi nila ‘yung weakness namin ‘yung wrestling at saka grappling. Nag-stick lang kami sa basics na grappling and wrestling,” he said.
“Nakita naman ng mga fans sa laban namin na nag-improve ‘yung ground game namin. This time, I’m very confident with my wrestling and grappling,” he added.
Belingon also draws motivation from Team Lakay, which is considered by no less than ONE Championship founder and chairman Chatri Sityodtong as the best team in Asia, according to his Facebook post.
“’Yun nga, naka-ilang belt na ‘yung Team Lakay tapos syempre sa akin, nacha-challenge ako sa mga teammates ko kasi nakuha nila ‘yung titles nila. Nakakadagdag sa confidence ko para sa laban na ‘to,” he said.