2019 setbacks have made Rene Catalan hungry heading into 2020

ABS-CBN Sports on Dec 12, 2019 03:58 PM
2019 losses have made Rene Catalan hungry heading into 2020
“I’ll do everything to get back to the winning lane. The SEA Games would have started my road to recovery, but I didn’t get it. So now I’m really hungry to get back and I’m excited for my return to ONE Championship,” - Rene Catalan (Photo: ONE Championship)

Rene "The Challenger" Catalan only had one goal when he decided to answer the call to compete in combat sambo at the 2019 Southeast Asian Games in the Philippines – to win a gold medal.

While the ONE strawweight division contender looked unstoppable up until the semifinals, he eventually lost to Fajar in the finals, 11-3. 

The 40-year-old felt the effects of the heel-hook that Chatchai Ritthidecha applied on him in the semifinals, affecting his mobility against the Indonesian. 

It was an unacceptable outcome according to Catalan, but the loss will add fuel to his fire when he makes his return to The Home Of Martial Arts.

“I am not satisfied. My main goal was to get the gold medal and I am disappointed. But it’s done. I know I would have gotten that gold medal, but my foot got in the way,” Catalan said. 

Catalan last saw action in the Circle when he challenged ONE Strawweight World Champion Joshua "The Passion" Pacio at ONE: MASTERS OF FATE last November, losing to the belt holder by submission in round two.

But the losses this year keep Catalan hungry heading into 2020, and he promises to turn those frustrations into positive results in ONE Championship.

“I’ll do everything to get back to the winning lane. The SEA Games would have started my road to recovery, but I didn’t get it. So now I’m really hungry to get back and I’m excited for my return to ONE Championship,” Catalan said. 

“This is an added inspiration. I will work double-time and move my way up for another title shot.”

Expecting that things will not get easier moving forward, “The Challenger” promises to stay prepared. 

"I am so hungry for that win. I’ll prepare hard for whoever ONE gives to me because I know they will give me someone extraordinary.”

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