ONE Warrior Series Reconnects With Rising Filipino Talent

Rich Franklin’s ONE Warrior Series (OWS) stays in the Philippines this week to catch up with two veterans of the show.

While in Banaue in the province of Ifugao, ONE Championship Vice President Franklin and his crew met up with Michael “The Foot Collector” Fangki and Ismael Bandiwan from the Tribal Submission team.

The duo was recruited during the Manila tryouts last season and went on to become veterans of ONE’s developmental league.

Fangki had a setback at ONE Warrior Series 1 when he lost a close decision to Michael Walker, but the experience taught him a lot.

“For me, I felt like my work at the gym didn’t pay off,” he says.

“The lesson I learned from my loss was not to focus on one aspect of the game. I only focused on wrestling because I wasn’t sure what my opponent’s specialty was.”

He returned a better competitor in July to get a quick TKO of Chan Samart and get back on track in his career.

Bandiwan was more successful in his first OWS bout in March, when he defeated Mohd Fouzein Mohd Fozi via unanimous decision.

“In my bout with Mohd Fozi, I had the mindset of, ‘Win or go home.’ When the referee announced the winner, I was ecstatic,” he says.

He was defeated by Mark Cuizon in his second OWS contest, but Franklin says he was actually more impressed with his performance because of the improvements he showed.

Bandiwan will return to action at ONE Warrior Series 3 this Thursday, 11 October to compete for a chance to earn a ONE Championship contract worth in excess of USD$100,000. He will face Japan’s Ryuto “Dragon Boy” Sawada in a strawweight match-up.

The event will broadcast live from Singapore on the ONE Super App.

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