It’s been a long time since Eduard Folayang fought in front of his compatriots, but on Friday, December 2, “Landslide” will return to action at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines.
However, it hasn’t been an easy ride for Folayang in recent times.
After a tough string of defeats in mixed martial arts, the former ONE Lightweight World Champion has his back against the wall and will relish the support from his fellow Filipinos.
The 39-year-old said:
“All I wanted to do is compete again and join this card. It doesn’t matter who I face. Actually, I was waiting for [Yoshihiro] Akiyama, but I think he turned down the offer to fight me.
“I’m grateful because I was able to [get on the card], and of course, the event will be in the Philippines for the first time in three years, so I’m super excited. I’m looking forward to performing in front of my home crowd.”
It’s also a tantalizing contest for those watching in Manila and around the world.
Both men prefer to fight in the stand-up, with wushu stylist Folayang going up against Marques, who owns a powerful boxing and Muay Thai arsenal.
For his part, “Landslide” thinks this matchup will put the ball in his court as he aims to pick up a much-needed victory in the lightweight MMA division.
“'[Marques] is also a striker. He comes from a Muay Thai background, and that’s good for me because that will bring me closer to where I truly want to be – back to the winning track.
“Looking at his previous fights, [Raimond Magomedaliev] tagged him with a right punch before [Hiroyuki Tetsuka] finished him with a left. Then he beat [Kim Kyung Lock], a striker, via decision, so I truly expect this fight to be settled on the feet.
“Expect a fantastic performance from me. I’m looking for a KO.”
Eduard Folayang Fired Up By Recent Victory Over John Wayne Parr
Although Eduard Folayang is eager to bounce back in mixed martial arts, he was victorious in his last outing against striking icon John Wayne Parr.
The Filipino faced Parr under Muay Thai rules in the Australian’s retirement fight at ONE X in March, earning a hard-fought win by unanimous decision.
That performance gave him a big injection of confidence before he steps back into his more familiar wheelhouse of MMA on December 2.
“I’m really grateful that I faced John Wayne Parr the last time out. It was an all-striking battle and it helped me a lot. I think it only further motivates me to do better and be more confident for this fight, should it stay on the feet.
“From that fight, my confidence grew a lot. I felt like my striking capabilities could be so much better as I was able to hang with John Wayne Parr. The fact that I stood toe-to-toe with him means I’m world-class. That’s a huge confidence booster.”
Despite his success in “the art of eight limbs,” Folayang wasn’t tempted to make a permanent switch.
Instead, the veteran’s heart still lies in mixed martial arts, where he’s achieved so much success on the global stage of ONE Championship.
“I missed competing in MMA, but I’m grateful with how I performed in Muay Thai the last time out. But now I’m back to doing what I’ve been doing, my bread and butter through these years.”
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