MMA, martial arts

Philippines’ Rene Catalan earns 6th ONE Championship win in Yangon, Myanmar

Rene Catalan, Kemp Cheng, Yoshitaka Naito

Rene Catalan, Kemp Cheng, Yoshitaka Naito

Rene “The Challenger” Catalan, 40, of the Philippines was one of the winners at “ONE: Reign of Valor.” It was the Filipino mixed martial artist’s sixth victory in ONE Championship.

“ONE: Reign of Valor” featured nine MMA matches and five ONE Super Series contests, which were kickboxing bouts. In the 11th bout of the evening, Catalan faced former ONE Strawweight World Champion Yoshitaka “Nobita” Naito, 35, of Japan in an MMA match in the strawweight division.

Kemp Cheng served as the referee of the strawweight bout. Catalan nullified Naito’s grappling.

Catalan stuffed the former ONE Strawweight World Champion’s relentless takedown attempts. After securing dominant position, the Filipino contender unloaded a barrage of strikes to overwhelm his Japanese opponent for the dominant stoppage victory.

Cheng put a stop to the contest after 4 minutes and 32 seconds in the first round. The Filipino fighter knocked out his Japanese opponent via strikes

Winning at “ONE: Reign of Valor” improved Catalan’s professional MMA record to 6 wins, 2 losses and 1 No Contest. On the other hand, Naito now has 13 wins and 3 losses.

Catalan won both the Wushu World Championship and Wushu World Cup two times each. He has also won gold medals for wushu at the Asian Games, South East Asian Games and Asian Championships.

Hailing from Iloilo, Philippines, Catalan is currently based in the capital of his home country. He is the head coach of Catalan Fighting System.

At “ONE: Reign of Valor,” Catalan and his student Jomary “The Zamboanginian Fighter” Torres, 23, of the Philippines were the two representatives of the Philippines. Naito was one of the four fighters who represented Japan.

Including the Philippines, Japan and Myanmar, 21 countries were represented at “ONE: Reign of Valor.” The other countries were Australia, Cambodia, China, Finland, Germany, Guam, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Italy, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Morocco, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, Thailand and the United Kingdom.

Before facing Naito, Catalan defeated previously undefeated Stefer “The Lion” Rahardian, 32, of Indonesia.

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