Eduard Folayang suffered a massive upset loss at the hands of Brazil’s Edson Marques, and many fans of the former ONE lightweight champion believe that it was called off extremely early.
Folayang and Marques were getting into a solid flow as both men were eager to land the highlight reel knockout–with the former motivated by his hometown crowd to perform at his absolute best and the latter aiming to make a name for himself.
The first round was relatively even between both fighters as the aggression was turned up to 11 and the second round saw even more dazzling displays of punches and kicks as Marques continued to find a home for his jab while Folayang’s Wushu-centric style manifested itself.
But with 2:53 to go in the second round Folayang was trapped along the cage and Marques took advantage of the opportunity, firing home a meteoric right hand that caused referee Olivier Coste to put a stop to the bout as “The Landslide” crashed down face-first onto the mat.
After he was cleared by the medical officials, Folayang spoke with the media and International Business Times sports editor Nissi Icasiano took the opportunity to get his thoughts on the matter.
“I was just caught with the punch, but I didn’t go completely blank. I just really fell face down, but I immediately got up because if I really couldn’t continue, I wouldn’t have remembered any of it. I can still recall [the fight],” Folayang somberly noted.
When asked about the stoppage by Coste, Folayang acquiesced that he could not do anything anymore since the fight was already called off.
“I was looking forward to a good result today, but it didn’t go my way. On my part, I think I could’ve still managed to fight. In that time, I think the worry then was when I fell face-first,” he stated.
Fans watching live at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Manila were looking forward to a solid fight, if not a win, from their hometown hero since many local sports circles regard him as the face of mixed martial arts (MMA) in the Philippines.
Whether a rematch is to be instituted or not is entirely dependent on the ruling of company chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong.
For Marques, the TKO victory over the Filipino legend allowed him to earn his first-ever $50,000 performance bonus with the Singapore-based promotion.
“Well, Chatri’s very generous. It’s still considered a knockout, but of course, on my part, it feels like salt was rubbed right into my wound. It happens,” he said.
But in Folayang’s case, the former ONE lightweight kingpin would love nothing more than to have an opportunity to rematch Marques and hopefully put a stop to his MMA losing streak that now extends to five fights.
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