Geje Eustaquio hopes to end hiatus in ONE’s return to Manila
MANILA, Philippines—Inactive for two years, Geje Eustaquio hopes to be part of ONE Championship’s return to Manila in ONE 164: Pacio vs Brooks at Mall of Asia Arena this December.
The former ONE flyweight champion is raring to end a long wait, eyeing a match against Gurdarshan “Gary” Mangat of India, who called him out last June after beating Yodkaikaew Fairtex.
“I’m looking forward to competing with Gurdarshan “Gary” Mangat from India. Let’s finish the business. It’s been a long period of time,” said Eustaquio during the launch of ONE Warrior Series on Thursday.
“It’s a very long time because the preparation is different when it comes to competition level. I’m really looking forward to seeing my name there and competing one more time,” he added.
Eustaquio, who owns a 14-8 record, last fought in October 2020 beating Song Min Jong by unanimous decision.
ONE Championship has yet to announce the full fight card of the December spectacle. But the 33-year-old Team Lakay member said he’s always ready to fight.
“I’m always ready. I always train every day. I make sure that it’s part of my routine and I believe I have done my assignment and my homework, professionally. Very much ready anytime, anywhere,” Eustaquio said.
Aside from making sure that he is still in tip-top shape despite the hiatus, Eustaquio was one of the mentors in the ONE Warrior Series, where he coached eight of the 16 aspirants vying for a spot to be part of their team and earn a $100, 000 ONE Championship contract.
Coaching aspiring Filipino fighters ignited Eustaquio’s desire to become a world champion again.
“I was inspired by their work ethic just to reach their dream. It ignites and motivates me to do more, to work as hard as them, to be on the championship level or championship rank,” he said. “It’s still my dream to have a ONE Championship World Champion one more time.”
Besides getting a new perspective from coaching the aspiring ONE warriors, Eustaquio, who also trains varsity players, appreciated his Team Lakay coach Mark Sangiao more through the reality TV show.
“Sometimes when it comes to coaching, you really have to treat your athletes as your sons or daughters for them to reach their potential and dreams. You have to extend the ultimate sacrifice to reach your goal as a team and I have seen and experienced that first hand in ONE Warrior Series,” he said.