Versus Performance’s Adrian Fok: Hong Kong has many good athletes, gyms, coaches

Adrian Fok
Adrian Fok

Training out of Versus Performance in Sheung Wan, Hong Kong, Adrian Fok, 28, will make his Legend Fighting Championship debut at “Legend FC 13” at the MGM Theater in Macau, China on September 14, 2019. He will face Chen Jie of China.

In 2015, Chen made his professional mixed martial arts debut after years of dabbling in various martial arts from Sanda to grappling and eventually Muay Thai. He is hoping that a win in Macau will bring some much needed attention to Hong Kong as a martial arts hub.

“The region has a lot of good athletes, good gyms and good coaches,” Fok said. “I hope that by having a strong performance in Macau I can bring some awareness to Hong Kong as a martial arts hub.”

Fok will be looking to keep that momentum rolling into “Legend 13,” an opportunity he is not going to let slip. He said, “Legend has been a breeding ground for some of the original UFC fighters in Asia and I want to grab this opportunity and see where it takes me.”

Leading up to “Legend FC 13,” Fok has been locked away honing his skills with Versus Performance. He shared, “The training has been constant.”

“My technique is good, my conditioning is solid and I’m really just refining everything,” Fok continued. “I’m feeling really confident. It’s going to be a great fight.”

Growing up in Hong Kong and committing to a life of professional fighting is not an easy task, especially in a city that encourages a career in finance over professional sport. But for Fok, it is something that runs much deeper.

“My family is from Hong Kong and as a Hong Konger, martial arts has always been ingrained in our culture,” Fox explained. “It’s a way for me to express myself and it allows me to create a better version of myself.”

“Without competition and without the fear of competition life gets a little boring,” the Versus Performance athlete continued. “The fear of competition keeps me sane.”

Ticket information for the upcoming Legend FC event in Macau is available at Meanwhile, here is a clip featuring Fok:

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Crocodile Fight Club’s Chen Jie to combine striking, grappling in ‘Legend FC 13’ bout against Adrian Fok

Chen Jie
Chen Jie

Chen Jie is one of the mixed martial artists who will represent China at “Legend FC 13.” He is set to face Legend Fighting Championship debutante Adrian Fok, 28, of Hong Kong.

Legend FC will hold “Legend FC 13” at the MGM Theater in Macau, China on September 14, 2019. It marks Chen’s third bout in the Hong Kong-based MMA promotion.

Training out of Crocodile Fight Club in Chongqing, China, Chen brings a solid Brazilian Jiu Jitsu background. While he is known as a Chinese grappling sensation, he will have a slight advantage in the striking department when he faces Fox at “Legend FC 13.”

On September 15, 2018, Chen showcased his striking skills at “Legend FC 12” at the Tian He Stadium in Guangzhou, China. The Crocodile Fight Club athlete competed in the bantamweight tournament and made his way through to the final.

“This match I’ll combine my striking and grappling skills,” Chen said. “My opponent is strong on the ground and I look forward to that challenge if he makes it past my stand up.”

On the other hand, Fok believes that he has a stamina and strategy advantage. His plan is to finish his fight against Chen early.

“I know my opponent has a similar style and physique to me so it’s a great matchup,” Fok said of Chen. “I can’t really say what’s going to happen but I don’t think it will end in a decision. That I can promise.”

“Legend FC 13” will be headlined by Liu Lian Jie and Yuan Chunbo, who are both fighting out of China. The full fight card will be announced in the next few days.

Ticket information for the upcoming Legend FC event in Macau is available at Meanwhile, here is a clip featuring Chen:

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Globe Volcanoes all set for World Series Qualifier, Hong Kong, Tonga, Zimbabwe first up in Pool E

Philippine Volcanoes
Philippine Volcanoes

The Philippine Volcanoes, backed by Globe Telecom are less than 24 hours away before they kick off what is to be, the highest level of competition they have played since their debut at the Rugby Sevens World Cup in 2013.

The Volcanoes finished 3rd in the Asia Sevens Series last year, which have earned them a prestigious position in the World Series Qualifier division. Only two Asian nations have earned the right to play in this division. On one side, the top 15 teams in the world will be playing in Round 7 of the HSBC Sevens Series, where Hong Kong will be hosting the Cathay Pacific HSBC Hong Kong Sevens. On the other side, the next best 12 teams in the world will be vying to qualify for the 2020 World Series, with the champion team being promoted to the top 15 teams in the world.

Team Philippines have been grouped with host nation Hong Kong, Tonga and Zimbabwe in the qualifier division. Team Captain Danny Bembo Matthews is optimistic about the teams chances. “We have played Hong Kong quite regularly in the past at the Asia Sevens Series, each year we get closer, so hopefully we can go one step further. For Zimbabwe, they have beaten us twice after the bell, so again hopefully we have the fitness to get one over them this time. For Tonga we know they are going to be a physical side so hopefully we can match them there and use speed as a difference”.

The Philippines have been in a nine day high intensity training camp, and are now in Hong Kong ready to take the field. Matthews had the honor to represent the Philippines among all captains for this weekends competitions. “To be captain is obviously a great honor, to actually be here doesn’t happen often, last time we were here was 2012, and we have the support of the whole Philippines behind us, we are very excited to have that”.

Coaches Frano Botica and David Johnston have selected the top 12 players to compete for the Philippines. Over the last two seasons the Volcanoes have progressed from ninth in Asia to third, with a pool of national players. The coaches have selected the top 12 players from the last two years who have all played consistently strong for the national team to handle the pressure and occasion of what may be, their biggest tournament to date. “It’s a special tournament, being part of the top 27 nations for Rugby sevens in the world will require our most elite and experienced athletes. In a division with teams such as Ireland, Russia, Germany and Tonga, the level is going to be extremely high, it will be an exciting challenge for the Philippines” shared Jake Letts , General Manager for Philippine Rugby.

Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Chairman of Ayala Corporation was a special guest at the 2019 Players Presentation at the Globe Tower, speaking on behalf of Ayala and Globe Telecom who signed as the headline sponsor for the Volcanoes from 2017 to 2020.

The players selected to play in this weekends World Series Qualifier have been released.

  1. Mark Mapacpac Roberts
  2. Joe Palabay Dawson
  3. Vincent Amar Young
  4. Timothy Bweheni
  5. Tim Alonso Berry
  6. Jonico Ater Hardwick
  7. Patrice Ortiz Olivier
  8. Donald Canon Coleman
  9. Daniel Bembo Matthews (c)
  10. Ryan Reyes Howe
  11. Justin Villazor Coveney
  12. Robert Luceno Fogerty
  • Head Coach: Frano Botica
  • Assistant Coach: David Johnston
  • Strength & Conditioning / Performance: Chris Alamil Everingham
  • Physiotherapist: Steph Yee

Match Times:

Friday, April 5:

  • Vs. Hong Kong – 13:24
  • Vs. Tonga – 16:08

Saturday, April 6:

  • Vs. Zimbabwe – 10:30

Venue: Hong Kong Stadium

Globe Ph Volcanoes select Top 18 for prestigious World Series qualifier

Philippine Volcanoes National Men’s Sevens Rugby Team

The Philippine Volcanoes National Men’s Sevens Rugby Team, backed by Globe Telecom and the Philippine Sports Commission, have selected their Top 18 for the upcoming 2019 World Series Qualifiers in Hong Kong to be played from April 5 to 7 at the Hong Kong National Stadium. The event is aligned and run in conjunction with one of the biggest events in Asia each year, the Cathay Pacific HSBC Hong Kong Sevens.

Only two Asian nations qualified in 2019, this year it will be the Philippines and 2018 Asian Games Gold Medalists Hong Kong. The Volcanoes secured their place in the prestigious event after finishing with a Bronze Medal in Asia for the 2018 Asia Sevens Series.

“It’s a spectacular achievement for a young Union, we have only been part of the World Rugby group since 2008. So to qualify for the event for the second time, it’s a sign we are playing quality Rugby on the international scene” shared Jake Letts, the General Manager for Philippine Rugby.

The Volcanoes equaled their highest ranking last year since 2012, which was also the last time they participated in the same event. It was all confirmed last October after a string of successful performances. 2012 was the last year the Volcanoes finished on the podium in Asia however it wasn’t all easily achievable each year after. The Volcanoes found themselves ranked as low as 9th in Asia in 2016 before making progressive moves forward a year later. After 12 months the Volcanoes moved to 6th place in 2017 and finished third place overall in 2018 for their Asian ranking.

“It’s been a long and tough road, we have had our ups and downs like any sports teams. Looking back we achieved a silver medal in Asia in 2011, third place in 2012 and qualified for the World Cup in 2013. We then finished 5th in the Asian Games in 2014 then soon after finished with a Gold Medal in the Southeast Asia Games in 2015. 2016 was a rebuilding year with a lot of players in turnover. We found ourselves again in 2017 with a Gold Medal in the Asia Rugby Trophy Series and it’s proven now we have the talent to be back to our best” added Letts.

The Volcanoes have kept the services of National Coaches, former New Zealand All Black Frano Botica and Canadian national David Johnston to keep the progression forward. Both coaches have been with the program since 2016. The coaches have kept loyalty to the selection for the Unions big event, opting for 13 players from the original team that helped achieve the qualification in 2018 and adding three players from the 2017 group that helped start the progression from their Gold Medal win in the Asia Trophy Series. They have also selected two shadow players into the squad.

“The coaches have kept 13 players from the 2018 group, plus adding Daniel Bembo Matthews who was the Captain in 2017 but was unavailable last year due to injury. Joining Danny in selection will be Tommy Kalaw Gilbert who was also one of our best in 2017 but also suffered a long-term injury in 2017. In addition to these two, Patrice Ortiz Oliver returns to the program after settling commitments with his professional club in Japan last year. Plus we have an exciting young Jaime Chuidian graduating from our youth program who will add a fresh new face to the group. All in all, 18 players aiming to secure their position in the top 12 for the competition” added Letts.

The Volcanoes will have an 8-day high intensity training camp starting on March 22 for 16 players to begin with, before making a cut to 12 players for the prestigious event. Each player looking to prove themselves at the highest level.

The 2019 World Rugby Sevens Series Qualifier Squad selected includes:

1. Christopher Arpon Bird
2. Daniel Bembo Matthews
3. Donald Canon Coleman
4. Edlen Cortez Hernandez
5. Evan Santillan Spargo
6. *Jaime Sebastian Antonio Chuidian
7. Jerome Padillo Rudder
8. Joe Palabay Dawson
9. Jonico Ater Hardwick
10. Justin Villazor Coveney
11. Mark Mapacpac Roberts
12. Patrice Ortiz Olivier
13. Robert Luceno Fogerty
14. Ryan Reyes Howe
15. Tim Alonso Berry
16. Timothy Bweheni
17. Tommy Kalaw Gilbert
18. Vincent Amar Young

(Two to be omitted for training camp)
*Denotes potential debutant

Head Coach: Frano Botica
Assistant Coach: David Johnston
Strength & Conditioning and Performance: Chris Everingham
Physiotherapist: Steph Yee
National Teams Coordinator: Prexie Halabi