Jhanlo Sangiao braces for debut-like fight in Manila

If anything, Jhanlo Sangiao, the son of Filipino mixed martial arts legend and Team Lakay patriarch Mark Sangiao, is bracing for a debut-like bout to be held here in Manila.

Jhanlo Sangiao of Team Lakay (ONE Championship)

The younger Sangiao is set to return to the Circle after an impressive ONE Championship debut with a submission win against Paul Lumihi last December 2021.

Jhanlo, 20, joins his fellow Team Lakay fighters and "kuyas" in the ONE: 164 on Dec. 3 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City which will be headlined by the ONE strawweight world title defense of Joshua Pacio against top-ranked contender Jarred Brooks.

Sangiao, who is also returning from an injury, embraces the pressure as he takes on centerstage as well in front of Filipino fans for the first time.

In his debut against Lumihi, ONE Championship held the event as a spectator-less one and this time around, it will be a totally different feeling from what the Team Lakay stalwart had experienced from a year ago.

"Iba 'yong pressure kasi nandiyan 'yong Filipino fans," said Jhanlo. "Hindi ko pa alam 'yong feeling paano lumaban nang may audience. Pero advise lang ng mga kuya ko, meron 'yong pressure nandiyan, pero focus lang."

What fuels Jhanlo the more is the fact that he's able to face an unbeaten foe in Matias Farinelli here in the country.

"Ine-expect ng mga tao around you na manalo ka. Siyempre andoon 'yong fire, motivated, tapos dapat manalo," he added.

Expectations toward Jhanlo are already high after taking his first ONE Championship win with a bang against Lumihi to improve to an overall 4-0 record.

Farinelli, who hails from Argentina, also holds a perfect slate of five wins -- all coming from submission.