Among the places in the Philippines that are considered models when it comes to dealing with the new coronavirus (COVID-19) cases are Baguio City and Benguet. A resident of both, reigning ONE Strawweight World Champion Joshua “The Passion” Pacio, 24, attributes this to the discipline of the Igorot people.
“The Baguio-Benguet area is somehow one of the places with the least amounts of cases of people that have tested positive for the coronavirus and I believe that it’s because of how disciplined the Igorot people are,” Pacio explained. “We listen and we take seriously what the government says. We stay at home and we don’t go out and we make sure that our health and safety is a must.”
While in quarantine, Pacio manages to continue his training with his teammate Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon, 32. The latter is a former ONE Bantamweight World Champion.
“As an athlete, I need to find ways to train and keep myself busy during this quarantine. Luckily, Kuya (Big Brother) Kevin and I live in the same barangay (village). That’s why we can train together.”
Pacio and Belingon are within the famed Team Lakay stable. Based in La Trinidad, Benguet, the mixed martial arts team was founded by Igorot MMA veteran Mark “The Machine” Sangiao, 41.
Team Lakay is home to some of the top ONE Championship athletes. Among Pacio and Belingon’s teammates are Edward “The Ferocious” Kelly, 35, Lito “Thunder Kid” Adiwang, 27, Southeast Asian Games 2019 gold medalist Gina “Conviction” Iniong Gina “Conviction” Iniong, 30, ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix finalist Danny “The King” Kingad, 24, former ONE Flyweight World Champion Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio, 31, and former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang, 36.
Pacio’s most recent bout was a win over Alex “Little Rock” Silva, 37, of Brazil at “ONE: Fire and Fury” at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines on January 31, 2020. Here is an interview with the Team Lakay fighter before the fight night:
Categories: Asia, MMA, Philippines, Sports
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