After dismal night, Team Lakay vows to be back ‘stronger and better’
MANILA, Philippines—Team Lakay’s night in ONE: Dawn of Heroes was dismal, to say the least.
The famed stable from Baguio went 1-4 in their five matches with Danny Kingad’s split decision victory over Reece McLaren in the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix the only victory it got in the stacked card.
Head coach Mark Sangiao was no doubt disappointed with how it all ended but, as he has seen from his fighters in the past, he remains confident they can turn things around.
“It’s not the first time that we’ve experienced days like this one, there were times when we went 0-5,” said Sangiao. “We learned a lot of lessons tonight, we’ll go back to the hotel and discuss what happened.”
Edward Kelly was the first from Team Lakay to lose his bout in the night after China’s Xie Bin took the technical decision victory even before the second round ended in the featherweight division.
Xie accidently hit the back of Kelly’s head midway through the second round and the Filipino wasn’t able to return to the fight after the five-minute injury time.
Honorio Banario then followed with a unanimous decision loss to Dae Sung Park in the lightweight class.
Team Lakay’s next losses then turned ugly.
Geje Eustaquio suffered a knockout loss 1:59 into his fight against Yuya Wakamatsu in the replacement bout in the Flyweight World Grand Prix.
The final loss was Eduard Folayang tapping out to Eddie Alvarez via rear naked choke 2:16 into their bout in the Lightweight World Grand Prix.
Nevertheless, Sangiao knows this is a struggle his team can bounce back from especially after what they’ve experienced at the end of 2017.
Eustaquio, Joshua Pacio, Kelly, Gina Iniong all experienced heartbreak in the latter part of 2017 but none had the biggest loss from Team Lakay than Folayang, who was knocked out 2:20 into the second round of his fight against Martin Nguyen that cost him the World lightweight championship.
All of them bounced back then and there’s no reason why they can’t do that again after Friday night.
“As I’ve said, this isn’t the first time we’ve experienced cases like this,” said Sangiao. “We will be back and they will be back stronger and better.”
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