Team Lakay staying ready amid pandemic
MANILA, Philippines—Team Lakay, Benguet’s famed mixed martial arts stable, is taking a wait-and-see approach amid the coronavirus pandemic.
That means its pro members are expected to continue training in their respective homes while Luzon is placed under an “enhanced community quarantine,” as they wait for developments from ONE Championship, where a glut of its members is competing.
“We’re in constant communication with the promotion, frequently checking for updates,” coach Mark Sangiao told the Inquirer in Filipino on Sunday.
“I know that they’re examining all possible options to hurdle these obstacles we are all facing, so we’re also doing our part on staying ready,” he added.
Sangiao said he has restricted entry to the team’s new gym in La Trinidad last since March 17, with only the team’s pro athletes having access to the facility.
Benguet is also operating under stricter curfew windows and quarantine measures, according to Sangiao, with shopping for essential goods only allowed from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Reigning strawweight kingpin Joshua Pacio, and former champions Eduard Folayang, Kevin Belingon, and Geje Eustaquio have been documenting their training sessions while in isolation.
“Right now, we’re employing a one-at-a-time use of the gym,” said Sangiao. “Should a fighter gets called up by ONE, he gets priority access.”
Chatri Sityodtong, the promotion’s head honcho, on March 12 announced that four of its upcoming events will be on a closed-door setting in Singapore.
Fight cards have yet to be determined by the promotion as of this writing, and the Team Lakay mentor said he has not been notified whether a member of his crew will compete on those events.
ONE, according to Sitdyodtong, will return to its live format on May 29 at Mall of Arena in Pasay when it takes off the lid on its inaugural Infinity series.
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