By Michael Angelo S. Murillo, Senior Reporter
HAD his career hit early this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, Filipino mixed martial arts fighter Rolando “Dy Incredible” Dy managed to finish 2020 strong, recently awarded the Brave Combat Federation (CF) Fighter of the Year.
On the strength of two straight victories in September and November after months of going without a fight, the 29-year-old Dy successfully willed himself as one of the noteworthy fighters in the Bahrain-based promotion and a contender in the lightweight division.
Mr. Dy (14-9), son of Filipino boxing legend Rolando Navarrette, first defeated Polish knockout artist Maciek Gierszewski on Sept. 24 at “Brave CF 42” in Riffa, where he won by split decision.
In said fight, he more than proved his worth notwithstanding the long layoff en route to the hard-earned victory.
Prior to it, Mr. Dy last fought in December 2019, where he absorbed his second straight defeat as a featherweight.
He then followed up his victory over Mr. Gierszewski with an even more impressive win over New Zealand’s John Brewin at “Brave CF 44” on Nov. 5.
Despite taking the fight on short notice, being a replacement fighter, Mr. Dy wound up a unanimous decision victor in the lightweight title eliminator clash, putting himself in position to challenge for the Brave championship belt currently held by Amin Ayoub of France.
Given how things went for him in 2020, the significance of the award bestowed on him is not lost to Mr. Dy.
“It’s truly an honor to have this award. This trophy is a testament to my dedication, hard work, and sacrifice to be one of the best fighters in the world. It is a very proud moment for myself, my family, and my beloved country — hopefully, this is the first of many,” said Mr. Dy in a release.
“When my back is against the wall, I shine and prove my doubters wrong,” he added.
Mr. Dy went on to urge Filipinos to never lose hope and continue to forge ahead, despite the tolls that the pandemic has brought.
“I know this year has been difficult for a lot of people, but let this be a reminder to never give up in the face of adversity. Challenges are made to make us grow and strong. Just hang in there and keep on fighting,” he said.