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ONE Championship: Folayang reveals secret to recapturing lightweight title

Last Friday, 23 November, Filipino martial arts hero Eduard “Landslide” Folayang successfully reclaimed the ONE Lightweight World Title after dominating his Singapor’s Amir Khan in the co-main event of ONE: CONQUEST OF CHAMPIONS.

This was Folayang’s third-straight victor after losing the title in the exact same location a year ago.

Drawing shades of his vintage form, Folayang overwhelmed the young lion with his signature spinning heel kicks and sharp elbows en route to recapturing the ONE Lightweight World Championship

It certainly wasn’t easy, however.

Folayang acknowledged the danger his Singaporean opponent posed, but he also believes that their game plan was well-executed that evening.

“Khan is a very tough athlete,” he praised.

“Our game plan was to punish him when he switched stances and score as much as I could in the clinch, while at the same time, avoid his left kick and his strong left hand.”

“We all know that he has knockout power in those hands–that’s why I was very cautious when executing my offense. Luckily, everything went perfectly and we are able to secure the victory.”

Folayang also revealed that part of their strategy was to bring the action to the ground, but he quickly abandoned this after getting the sense that Khan could take advantage of the grappling exchanges.

Back in September, Khan submitted his Team Lakay comrade Honorio “The Rock” Banario in the first round via rear-naked choke at ONE: BEYOND THE HORIZON in Shanghai, China.

Training with world champion grapplers at Evolve MMA, Khan proved to be a formidable threat on the ground.

“We had plans to take him down, but eventually, we figured out that he was also waiting for that opportunity. That’s why we didn’t focus on that strategy that much, and just stuck with our original game plan,” Folayang explained.

“We were able to predict the things he presented inside the cage. I was able to stop all those attempts.”

Opportunities to finish the bout quickly entered Folayang’s mind after most of his power strikes found their targets.

He acknowledged the task to be easier said than done, considering he was up against a young, hungry, and determined competitor.

“I had my chances to finish him, but he is a tough warrior and came prepared to fight,” he stated. “But a win is a win. What’s important is that I have secured the victory and the belt is already back here in the Philippines.”