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Joshua Pacio's Secret To Becoming Team Lakay's Youngest ONE Superstar

April 08, 2019

Since he started life as a professional athlete when he was just 17, Joshua “The Passion” Pacio has gone on to defeat martial arts legends, become a main-event star, and win a World Title in a few short years.

Most competitors could only dream of achieving these things, but Pacio did it all by the time he was 23.

On Friday, 12 April, he has the chance to reach another milestone and claim the ONE Strawweight Title for the second time when he faces Yosuke “The Ninja” Saruta in a rematch at ONE: ROOTS OF HONOR.

Filipino phenom Joshua Pacio is laser-focused on ONE goal getting the Strawweight World Title back on 12 April!

Filipino phenom Joshua Pacio is laser-focused on ONE goal getting the Strawweight World Title back on 12 April!Manila | 12 April | 6:00PM | Watch on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onehonor19

Posted by ONE Championship on Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Many teenagers and young men would be overwhelmed by the pressures involved in accomplishing such remarkable things, but the Filipino hero has developed a determined mindset that has carried him to the top.

“It starts with a dream,” he says.

“Back when I was still overweight, I really wanted to pursue this for fitness, but when I watched mixed martial arts tournaments, I was inspired to compete myself.”

“That’s when I fell in love with martial arts. My life changed in a lot of aspects of my life, not just the physical aspect.

“I’ve also developed discipline, a good attitude, and an ethic for hard work. If not for hard work, I may not have reached where I am now.”

Will Joshua Pacio pull off his world-famous "Passion Lock" on Yosuke Saruta come 12 April?

Will Joshua Pacio pull off his world-famous "Passion Lock" on Yosuke Saruta come 12 April?Manila | 12 April | 6:00PM | Watch on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onehonor19

Posted by ONE Championship on Thursday, April 4, 2019

Pacio’s attitude towards his career can be traced back to the very start of his journey, and it has helped keep him grounded as he achieved fame and success.

“Starting from my uncle, and later Team Lakay, it’s not kicks or punches that they teach you [in martial arts] at first – it’s being disciplined and humble,” he explains.

“No matter what you accomplish in life, if you’re not humble, no one will see your skills.”

“First and foremost is attitude, being humble, and how you deal with people. Skill will come next.”

“The Passion” credits the people around him for reminding him of these values, no matter how far he has gone in his career.

“Coach Mark [Sangiao] is there, as well as my seniors like kuyaEduard [Folayang]kuya Kevin [Belingon], and everyone else – including my first coaches like my uncle and Coach Rogelio,” he adds.

“These are the guys who still provide guidance, even now.”

How will Joshua Pacio get it done against Yosuke Saruta on 12 April?

How will Joshua Pacio get it done against Yosuke Saruta on 12 April?Manila | 12 April | 6:00PM | Watch on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onehonor19

Posted by ONE Championship on Thursday, April 4, 2019

Despite all the help and advice he received, Pacio does not pretend that his journey has been easy.

However, by cutting his teeth in local promotions in the Philippines, he learned to adapt to the challenges he would face in the world’s largest martial organization, and set himself up for a successful tenure at the highest level.

“Thankfully, I had enough time to adjust,” he said.

“In 2016, in just my third match [in ONE], I was thrust in the main event, so that’s when I was overwhelmed.”

“However, as Coach [Mark Sangiao] keeps telling us, this is the career that we chose, so we have to be flexible, and no matter what happens, we have to know how to adjust.”

Even though he has reached great heights in his young career, Pacio remains motivated to continue evolving as a martial artist and pushing to achieve more.

Joshua Pacio's not going to stop until he gets the ONE Strawweight World Title back!

Joshua Pacio's not going to stop until he gets the ONE Strawweight World Title back! Manila | 12 April | 6:00PM | Watch on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onehonor19

Posted by ONE Championship on Monday, April 1, 2019

That is because he wants to achieve something more than just World Titles.

He hopes that through his example, he can inspire others who wish to take the same path. For those people, he has some advice.

“If they choose martial arts as a career or a way of life, they need dedication, focus, and a good attitude,” says Pacio.

“Those are the most important, as well as the core values of martial arts.”

“Of course, train hard, because nothing great can be achieved by taking shortcuts. You need to overcome difficult obstacles. Train every day, and finally, when you reach your goals, stay humble.”

“The Passion” may be humble, but that does not stop him from being confident and ambitious. As much as it is not the be-all, end-all in his career, he is driven to become the best strawweight in the world.

The experts break down Joshua Pacio and Yosuke Saruta's epic rematch for the ONE Strawweight World Title! Predictions?

The experts break down Joshua Pacio and Yosuke Saruta's epic rematch for the ONE Strawweight World Title! Predictions? Manila | 12 April | 6:00PM | Watch on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/onehonor19

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, April 5, 2019

He can prove that he is at the Mall Of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines, when he attempts to win back the belt in the co-main event against Saruta.

Even if he reclaims the gold, he still says there will be much more to do.

“I don’t think that I have accomplished a lot – I still believe that I still have a long way to go, and I have not reached the peak of my career,” he explains.

“Maybe [it will be] 10 more years before I believe that I’m at my peak. I’m still dedicated to training, and continuously improving in skill and attitude to become a better martial artist, and a better human being.”

Manila | 12 April | 7:00PM | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Ticketshttp://bit.ly/onehonor19