Sangiao happy wards are in world rankings
Coach Mark Sangiao is basking in a rare ray of sunshine after receiving an update on ONE Championship’s latest world rankings.
“It was the first bit of news I saw when I turned on my phone,” he told the Inquirer in a text message. “It’s the kind that brings joy and smile to your face at the heart of these not-so-good things we’re all facing right now.”
Five fighters out of his Team Lakay stable crashed the mixed martial arts rankings, led by young strawweight champion, Joshua Pacio.
Kevin Belingon, Danny Kingad, and the upstart Lito Adiwang also made the cut. Rounding out the list is Gina Iniong, who is coming off a gold in Southeast Asian Games kickboxing and a decisive victory in ONE’s event here in January.
“It’s a good push not only for me and for the fighters,” he said. “It’s a motivation and a validation that we’re doing right by [our approach] to be competitive, and world-caliber athletes.”
“But then again, this ranking doesn’t mean that we can [afford to begin] plodding,” he said.
Team Lakay, at one point, had five simultaneous world champions across two global promotions: Pacio, Belingon, Eduard Folayang, Geje Eustaquio and Stephen Loman.
Loman is the bantamweight champion of another fast-rising Asian MMA promotion, Brave CF. He has defended his title four straight times since winning it three years ago.
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