ONE Championship: Pacio reclaims strawweight title

Published April 13, 2019, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

Joshua “The Passion” Pacio of the Philippines reclaimed the ONE Strawweight World Championship in impressive fashion, knocking out Yosuke “The Ninja” Saruta in their highly-anticipated rematch at ONE: Roots of Honor held at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila.

Yosuke Saruta (L) finds himself on the receiving end of a kick from Joshua Pacio (ONEChampionship photo)
Yosuke Saruta (L) finds himself on the receiving end of a kick from Joshua Pacio (ONEChampionship photo)

Pacio survived a first-round knockdown from Saruta and began getting more comfortable with his strikes as the bout wore on. Come the fourth fourth round, Pacio caught Saruta with a well-timed high kick that instantly knocked Saruta out.

In the main event, Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen of Vietnam and Australia continued his reign over the featherweight division with a spectacular knockout victory over former World Champion Narantungalag Jadambaa of Mongolia to retain the ONE Featherweight World Title.

Nguyen and Jadambaa exchanged thunderous strikes in the opening round, both looking to end the night early. In the second round, Nguyen punished Jadambaa with powerful kicks to the leg before unleashing a perfectly-placed flying knee to take the Mongolian star out and remain the featherweight division’s king.

In other matches, Filipino featherweight contender Edward “The Ferocious” Kelly weathered a storm of submission attempts from South Korean grappler Sung Jong Lee to score a second-round TKO win in front of his hometown crowd. Kelly fought off a wave of kneebar and heel hook attempts from Lee, who was in constant pursuit of grappling exchanges.

Kelly turned the tables in the second round after fending off another submission attempt and pounded Lee out with piston-like punches for the stoppage win.

Also, “Pretty Boy” Kwon Won Il of South Korea bounced back in a big way after making quick work of Filipino veteran Eric “The Natural” Kelly with a flash knockout in the first round. The Korean prospect finished things off with some ground-and-pound for the stoppage win in just 19 seconds.

Kicking off the event was Filipino flyweight Ramon “The Bicolano” Gonzales who made short work of Japan’s Akihiro Fujisawa, forcing him into a first-round submissions.

Fujisawa attempted a takedown early in the first round but found himself getting caught in a deep guillotine choke. Gonzales postured up and tightened the choke, forcing Fujisawa to tap out abruptly.

Official results for ONE: ROOTS OF HONOR

  • ONE Featherweight World Championship bout: Martin Nguyen defeats Narantungalag Jadambaa by Knockout (KO) at 1:07 minutes of round 2
  • ONE Strawweight World Championship bout: Joshua Pacio defeats Yosuke Saruta by Knockout (KO) at 2:43 minutes of round 4
  • ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix Quarter-final bout: Tatsumitsu Wada defeats Gustavo Balart by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds
  • Catch Weight (68.0 KG) bout: Leandro Issa defeats Fu Chang Xin by Submission (Armbar) at 3:03 minutes of round 1
  • ONE Super Series Light Heavyweight Kickboxing bout: Andrei Stoica defeats Ibrahim El Bouni by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds
  • Welterweight bout: James Nakashima defeats Luis Santos by TKO (Injury) at 0:56 minutes of round 2
  • Featherweight bout: Edward Kelly defeats Sung Jong Lee by TKO (Strikes) at 2:51 minutes of round 2
  • ONE Super Series Heavyweight Kickboxing bout: Anderson Silva defeats Andre Meunier by Knockout (KO) at 1:14 minutes of round 1
  • Featherweight bout: Kwon Won Il defeats Eric Kelly by Knockout (KO) at 0:19 minutes of round 1
  • ONE Super Series Bantamweight Muay Thai bout: Saemapetch Fairtex defeats Ognjen Topic by Majority Decision (MD) after 3 rounds
  • Bantamweight bout: Xie Bin defeats Ahmad Qais Jasoor by Submission (D’Arce Choke) at 2:27 minutes of round 2
  • Flyweight bout: Niko Soe defeats Eko Roni Saputra by TKO (Doctor Stoppage) at 3:03 minutes of round 1
  • ONE Super Series Flyweight Muay Thai bout: Lerdsila Phuket Top Team defeats Momotaro by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds
  • Women’s Atomweight bout: Bi Nguyen defeats Dwi Ani Retno Wulan by TKO (Strikes) at 3:55 minutes of round 1
  • Flyweight bout: Ramon Gonzales defeats Akihiro Fujisawa by Submission (Guillotine Choke) at 1:19 minutes of round 1