FILIPINO mixed martial arts fighter Robin “Ilonggo” Catalan makes his ONE Championship return at the promotion’s pre-recorded “Unbreakable III” event on Friday and is looking to earn back-to-back wins.
Mr. Catalan, 30, sporting a 10-6 record, takes the ONE Circle after more than a year of inaction against Japanese Ryuto Sawada in a scheduled three-rounder in the event set in Singapore.
The Iloilo City native last fought in ONE in November 2019, where he was a second-round knockout winner (head kick) over Cuban Gustavo Balart.
In said fight, Mr. Catalan was on point with his striking throughout the bout and held his own against the high-level grappling of the Olympian wrestler Balart.
Late in the second round, he uncorked a well-timed right high kick that connected and took Mr. Balart out instantly.
It is the same success he wants to achieve versus Mr. Sawada, who was victorious in his last fight in ONE in October.
“This fight is important for me as a win could propel me to be one of the contenders in my division (strawweight),” Mr. Catalan said.
He admits, however, that against Mr. Sawada he has his work cut out for him, but he remains undeterred and hell bent on making things happen and winning.
Interestingly, Mr. Catalan’s brother, Rene, also fights in the strawweight division and ONE: Unbreakable III, headlined by the atomweight collision between Stamp Fairtex of Thailand and Alyona Rassohyna of Ukraine.
It will shown over One Sports+ on Cignal TV at 8:30 p.m. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo