ONE Championship: Four World Titles make Team Lakay’s Christmas special this 2018
ABS-CBN Sports on Dec 13, 2018 12:08 PM
“It’s our biggest year. We won championship titles and received many awards this year. This is the result of our hard work, dedication, and sacrifice,” - Team Lakay head coach Mark Sangiao
Christmas is one the biggest holidays in the Philippines. Incomparable to other countries, Christmas lights and holiday jingles start to play as early as September.
People from all walks of life gather on this special occasion and celebrate the holiday with food, drinks, and by spending time with friends and family.
Members of Team Lakay, the country's most renowned mixed martial arts group, have its own way of holding an annual celebration for the Yuletide season.
Housing four ONE World Champions such as Eduard Folayang, Kevin Belingon, Geje Eustaquio and Joshua Pacio, the Baguio City-headquartered camp holds a yearly Christmas party in mid-December to cap off the year.
"We have an early celebration coming up this Saturday, 15 December. We are going to have a beach house party in San Juan, La Union," Eustaquio shared.
"The gathering will celebrate our accomplishments this 2018, and also prepare for 2019. Everybody will come that day, most notably our professional athletes.”
Their way of celebration is not like any other party as it involves honoring their native tradition with a sumptuous feast and holding insightful talks for the advancement of their athletes’ career.
"We have a program, a feast, and an open mat for whoever wants to roll. Our world champions will share their experience and tell what they went through this year," Team Lakay head coach Mark Sangiao bared.
"This kind of gathering is our way to spend quality time with each other. This is our way to inspire other athletes, tighten our bond, and learn from each other.”
Finishing their campaign with four gold-plated belts under the ONE Championship banner, Sangiao believes that 2018 is Team Lakay’s most successful year since its inception in 2003
“It’s our biggest year. We won championship titles and received many awards this year. This is the result of our hard work, dedication, and sacrifice,” the Team Lakay headmaster said.
“Like we always say, this is our passion. We love what we do. These awards and titles are just the fruit of our hard labor.”
Although Team Lakay hauled all the titles, recognition and accolades that they could possibly get in 2018, all that matters to them is seeing each individual with gleeful smiles on their faces by the year's end.
"We are grateful for every year. We are always full of joy,” Eustaquio stated. “Seeing each other happy, seeing everyone living a peaceful life is more than enough.”