ONE Championship: Eduard Folayang Back On A Familiar Road As He Looks To Reclaim World Title Anew

ABS-CBN Sports on May 31, 2019 11:53 AM
Folayang Back On Familiar Road As He Looks To Reclaim Title
“I lost again only to climb the ladder once more and win it back. Whatever the opportunity that would come, I won’t miss it again.”

Eduard "Landslide" Folayang vows to leave no stone unturned in his quest to obtain another shot at the ONE Lightweight World Title.

The 35-year-old superstar yielded his prestigious belt to old rival Shinya "Tobikan Judan" Aoki at ONE: A NEW ERA on 31 March in Tokyo, Japan. In the night's main event, Aoki put the Team Lakay veteran to sleep with an arm-triangle choke to claim the gold.

Folayang, who is touted as the face of Philippine mixed martial arts, said that he is ready to once again tread the long and hard road to World Title contention — the same thing he did after losing the lightweight strap to Martin Nguyen in his first run as a World Champion.

“It’s just a matter of time. If we get that chance once again, why not? If I need a couple of more wins to reach that, of course, I’m open to it,” Folayang said.

“I always make my way back to title contention. Sometimes the opportunity comes for other athletes to get an immediate rematch, or stay within the top two contenders of the division. I feel like I’m still at that level.”

Folayang became the ONE Lightweight World Champion for the first time when he defeated Aoki by way of third-round technical knockout at ONE: ROOTS OF HONOR in November 2016 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

He lost that title to Nguyen in his second defense at ONE: LEGENDS OF THE WORLD in November 2017, where he suffered a devastating loss via second-round knockout.

The Baguio City native was unrelenting, however.

Folayang crawled his way back to the top, eventually reclaiming the ONE Lightweight World Championship by beating Singaporean knockout artist Amir Khan via unanimous decision at ONE: CONQUEST OF CHAMPIONS in November 2018.

“I think I’ve proven it time and time again. I lost before, then I was able to get back the ONE Lightweight World Title,” he said.

“I lost again only to climb the ladder once more and win it back. Whatever the opportunity that would come, I won’t miss it again.”

ONE Championship's talent-rich lightweight division is now being ruled by young phenom Christian "The Warrior" Lee.

Should the opportunity present itself, Folayang would love the chance to try his mettle against the 20-year-old titleholder.

“I’d love to test myself against the new champion,” the Filipino said. “He’s the ‘young lion.’ I want to face that young lion.”

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