Eduard Folayang: Manny Pacquiao truly cares for the Filipino people

Mark Sangiao, Joshua Pacio, Eduard Folayang, Geje Eustaquio
Mark Sangiao, Joshua Pacio, Eduard Folayang, Geje Eustaquio

Former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang, 34, in Philippine mixed martial arts is arguably what Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao, 40, is in Philippine boxing in terms of influence and popularity. The two sports stars attended the joint National Heroes Day celebration of ONE Championship and Grab Philippines on August 26, 2019 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines.

“Not only is he a sports icon but Manny is also a terrific human being and an amazing public servant who truly cares for the Filipino people,” Folayang stated during the event. “With what he’s given back to the people, even taking money out of his own pocket to help the poor and underprivileged, it’s more than admirable. It’s inspiring, and it’s motivating.”

“Everyone is in good spirits right now,” Folayang added. “It was such an honor to even be in the same room as Manny. He’s an absolute legend in every sense.”

Folayang was with his Team Lakay teammates former ONE Flyweight World Champion Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio, 30, and reigning ONE Strawweight World Champion Joshua “The Passion” Pacio, 23, during the event. Also in attendance were Team Lakay head coach Mark “The Machine” Sangiao, 39, ONE Championship senior executive Victor Cui, 48, and Grab Philippines community members.

ONE Championship and Grab Philippines declared Pacquiao as a national hero during the event. Cui, Sangiao, Folayang, Eustaquio and Pacio presented a beautifully framed ONE Championship world title belt to the boxing legend as a commemorative token.

The Team Lakay members, fans and Grab drivers who all came out to see Pacquiao were treated to a world-class evening program. Pacquiao took the time to make a sizable donation to the Jinkee and Manny Heart Foundation, which gives free heart care for children in the Philippines, and donated 1,000 pesos to every Grab driver in attendance, which ended up totaling 1 million pesos overall.

Meanwhile, watch Pacquiao’s most recent fight here:

[PHOTOS] Philippines vs USA: Eduard Folayang, Eddie Alvarez fight at ‘ONE: Dawn of Heroes’ in the Philippines

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The Philippines and the United States were represented at “ONE: Dawn of Heroes” on August 2, 2019. It was the third ONE Championship event in 2019 that took place in the Philippines.

Featuring 12 mixed martial arts matches and two Muay Thai matches, “ONE: Dawn of Heroes” took place at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines. In the 12th bout of the evening, Eduard “Landslide” Folayang, 35, of the Philippines faced Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez, 35, of the U.S.

Including the Philippines and the U.S., 12 countries were represented at “ONE: Dawn of Heroes.” The other countries were Australia, Brazil, China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, Thailand, the United Kingdom and Vietnam.

Folayang was one of the five hometown heroes on the card. Alvarez was one of the three representatives of the U.S.

Blue Corner

Alvarez is training out of Ricardo Almeida BJJ in Robbinsville Township, Mercer County, New Jersey, USA. Born in Kensington, Pennsylvania, USA on January 11, 1984, he has been competing professionally since 2003.

“ONE: Dawn of Heroes” marked the second ONE Championship outing of Alvarez. He was coming out of a knockout loss to Timofey Nastyukhin, 29, of Russia.

Red Corner

Folayang is training out of Team Lakay in La Trinidad, Benguet, Philippines. He has been competing professionally since 2007.

“ONE: Dawn of Heroes” marked Folayang’s 17th ONE Championship outing. He was coming out of an arm triangle choke submission loss to Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki, 36, of Japan.

Results

Folayang and Alvarez competed in ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix semi-final bout. Olivier Coste served as the referee.

Coste out a stop to the lightweight contest after 2 minutes and 16 seconds in the first round. Alvarez submitted Folayang via rear-naked choke.

Winning at “ONE: Dawn of Heroes” improved the professional MMA record of Alvarez to 30 wins and 7 losses. On the other hand, Folayang now has 21 wins and 8 losses.

Check the complete “ONE: Dawn of Heroes” results on Conan Daily. Meanwhile, here is a clip from the press conference:

Can Eduard Folayang knock out Eddie Alvarez at ‘ONE: Dawn of Heroes’ at SM Mall of Asia?

Eduard Folayang
Eduard Folayang

Eduard “Landslide” Folayang, 35, of the Philippines will face Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez, 35, of the United States at “ONE: Dawn of Heroes.” They will compete in a semi-final bout of the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix.

ONE Championship will hold “ONE: Dawn of Heroes” at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines on August 2, 2019. Folayang is one of the five Filipino mixed martial artists representing Team Lakay on the card.

Folayang held the ONE Lightweight World Championship title first from 2016 to 2017 then in 2018. Alvarez held the Bellator Lightweight World Championship belt in 2009 and in 2013 and the UFC Lightweight Championship belt in 2016.

“I think Eddie is a good martial artist,” Folayang said of his “ONE: Dawn of Heroes” opponent. “You will not become a world champion if you don’t have a good approach to being a martial artist. I believe wrestling and boxing are his strengths.”

“But if you’ll look at Eddie’s track record, you will see that almost all his defeats are from high-level strikers,” Folayang continued. “That is his weakness. It’s hard but I am pushing myself to prepare.”

Training out of Team Lakay in Baguio City, Philippines, Folayang remains optimistic of his chances against Alvarez. The Filipino mixed martial arts superstar is looking to beat his American opponent by way of knockout.

“A knockout and submission will always be there if you are in the proper position,” the Team Lakay fighter pointed out. “That is a given. I think it will end in a knockout.”

Fortunately for Folayang, he will not be facing Alvarez alone as he will have the entire crowd behind him in Manila. Also, his Team Lakay teammates Edward “The Ferocious” Kelly, 35, Honorio Banario, Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio, 30, and Danny “The King” Kingad, 23, are also on the card.

“Having this bout here in the Philippines gives me confidence,” Folayang concluded. “Those are what give me the confidence to face him in this bout, my preparation and the crowd.”

Meanwhile, here is a clip featuring Folayang in an open workout at the Victory Sports Tower in Quezon City, Metro Manila in 2018:

Edward Kelly inspired by Team Lakay brothers Eduard Folayang, Honorio Banario, Geje Eustaquio, Danny Kingad

Edward Kelly (© ONE Championship)
Edward Kelly (© ONE Championship)

Edward “The Ferocious” Kelly, 35, of the Philippines is highly motivated to face “The Stalker” Xie Bin, 21, of China on August 2, 2019 at “ONE: Dawn of Heroes” at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines. The Filipino contender is competing alongside his Team Lakay teammates Eduard “Landslide” Folayang, 35, Honorio Banario, Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio, 30, and Danny “The King” Kingad, 23.

Kelly has mixed emotions sharing the stage with four of his teammates. He said, “I feel a little pressure for me to do well in my next match.”

“When you are performing on the same night with Eduard, Honorio, Geje, and Danny, I feel the need to do well and win,” Kelly continued. “I also feel inspired because I know that I am not alone and no matter what happens, we will be there for each other.”

At “ONE: Dawn of Heroes,” Kelly and Xie will battle it out in the featherweight division. Along with Team Lakay, the Filipino contender has formulated a game plan for his upcoming bout.

While Kelly excels in striking, Xie is known for his grappling game. The latter is riding a six-bout win streak with four victories coming by way of submission.

“Xie Bin is really a great submission athlete,” Kelly said. “I know that I have more experience fighting professionally than him but I am not underestimating his skills in any way.”

“Making his opponents tap may be his strongest point,” Kelly said of Xie. “But I believe that his striking is his weakness and that is where I will take the match. I just need to time my strikes accurately and prepare to defend myself from his takedowns.”

Knowing that there are four other Team Lakay fighters on the card, Kelly feels confident to face Xie at “ONE: Dawn of Heroes.” The Filipino contender draws strength from knowing his entire team will be there in his corner, as usual.

“I’m really happy and excited to share the stage with my brothers,” Kelly concluded. “We have done a lot of things together for the longest time and to compete together in our country is just a huge boost to our morale.”

Meanwhile, here is a clip featuring Kelly and his Team Lakay brothers: