ONE: Joshua Pacio to show versatility in third fight vs Saruta
MANILA, Philippines—One of Joshua Pacio’s goals has been to be a versatile fighter.
Pacio gets to show how far he’s come when he tangles with a familiar rival in Yosuke Saruta in ONE: Revolution on September 24 at Singapore Indoor Stadium.
“We focused on all facets of my game. Remember that our goal is to become a well-rounded athlete, so that covers everything from striking to grappling to wrestling and defense,” said Pacio, who will defend his strawweight strap.
“I’m a more confident Joshua Pacio now and I sure am well more equipped. We’ve exchanged swords twice already and in those encounters, we’ve gauged each other pretty well.”
Pacio and Saruta split their first two meetings.
The Japanese veteran won the first encounter by split decision back in January 2019 before Pacio evened the score in emphatic fashion in the rematch three months later with a fourth-round knockout to regain the belt.
It’s been 20 months since Pacio last fought that’s why the Team Lakay star is raring to make his return.
“I’m so fired up to get back inside the ONE Circle. It’s been a year and a half since my last outing and I really miss the feeling of being inside that Circle and defending the belt,” said Pacio, who beat Alex Silva by split decision in January 2020.
“Adding to my excitement is that my wish was granted, with Saruta topping the contender’s list and he really is deserving to face me again for the third time.”
Pacio, 25, who is nine years the junior of Saruta, also said that he’s a more patient fighter now unlike before when he would use to go for the knockout.
“Honestly, I’ve learned that I should not seek for a knockout win as it naturally presents itself when an opportunity opens. Instead, I should just have to follow the game plan, focus on executing it, and just show what I am capable of,” he said.
“This is why we fight and get better every day. All of us want to have this belt and be the champion. This serves as a big motivation for all of us to become better martial artists and inspiration to our fans.”