MACAU – Geje Eustaquio proved he’s not just a stand-in belt holder as he edged Adriano Moraes to become the undisputed ONE flyweight champion on Saturday night at the Studio City event center.
Eustaquio, the erstwhile interim champion who earned the tag after filling in and winning a title bout altogether last January, proved his win was no fluke as he survived a tough challenge from the Brazilian champion in ONE: Pinnacle of Power to win via split decision.
The Team Lakay standout thus unified the flyweight belts, doing it in Asia’s gambling capital filled with OFWs.
“The feeling is awesome,” Eustaquio addressed the crowd after the title fight. “This is to all my kababayans here. Thank you for coming out.”
Showing he’s a better-rounded fighter, the Baguio native and wushu striking specialist surprised his taller Brazilian foe with takedowns and improved takedown defense, flashing it right in the first round that he ended with a flourish.
Eustaquio, though, had survive a couple of scares that saw him got locked in a couple of submission moves, including a reverse rear-naked choke in the second round.
By overcoming the obstacles, Eustaquio also proved he's the "king of rematch" after getting back at Moraes who forced him to tap out over three years ago.
In the co-main event, Xiong Jing Nan defended her women’s strawweight belt after defeating Laura Balin in a title bout that also went the distance.
In other matches, Petchmorrakot Wor. Sangprapai beat Fabrice “The Funky Drummer” Fairtex Delannon via TKO doctor stoppage in a Muay Thai fight, while Ev Ting outpointed Koji Ando via unanimous decision.
In two kickboxing matches, Tarik Khbabez knocked out Alain Ngalani in kickboxing match, while Lerdsila Phuket beat Sok Thy via split decision.
Yukinori Ogasawara knocked out Rui Botelho with spinning back elbow. And earlier, Cambodian Rin Sarot beat Mario Wirawan of Indonesia, ref stoppage due to strikes.