TWO days after Independence Day, three Filipinos will be flying the flag in the mixed martial arts stage.
Geje Eustaquio, Ruel Catalan, and Joseph Omana try to bring pride and honor to the country as they take part in the latest edition of ONE Fighting Championship, which shifts to Indonesia on Saturday with Era of Champions at the Mata Elang International Stadium in Jakarta.
The three Pinoys are fighting in the flyweight division, a class considered as the best for Filipinos to make a name in the international arena.
Among the three, it’s Eustaquio who’s the farthest up the ONE FC flyweight hierarchy and the pride of Baguio City hopes to move closer to a shot at the vacant flyweight belt when he collides with Kentaro Watanabe.
A Team Lakay product, Eustaquio is coming off a convincing unanimous-decision win over compatriot Eugene Toquero last December, but is expected to have his hands full against his 30-year-old Japanese foe, who sports a 10-4 win-loss card and has won six of his last seven fights.
Catalan, who snapped a three-fight skid with a knockout victory against Khim Dima also last December, seeks to embark on a winning streak this time as he faces Malaysian Gianni Subba, who Toquero defeated last month.
Omana, a former pro boxer, makes his transition to the world’s fastest-growing sport as he faces Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke of Thailand
All three Pinoys passed their respective weight tests on Friday, as well as the rest of the fighters participating in the 17th edition of Asia’s largest MMA organization, featuring the main event between Kosuke Suzuki and Adriano Moraes.