Ilonggo MMA fighter bows to Thai foe

ILONGGO fighter Robin Catalan bows to Thai opponent Pongsiri Mitsatit during their encounter in ONE: Warriors of Light at the Impact Arena in Bangkok, Thailand, May 11. (ONE FB Photo)

AN ILONGGO Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighter lost to his Thai opponent in the ONE: Warriors of Light at the Impact Arena in Bangkok, Thailand on May 11, 2019.

Robin Catalan, a native of Iloilo City, was overwhelmed by crowd favorite Pongsiri Mitsatit during their clash. The Ilonggo fighter suffered a crushing knee to the body that resulted in a knockout defeat just three minutes and five seconds into the bout.

The strawweight MMA contenders set a blistering pace from the opening bell. Mitsatit first launched a kick just seconds into the contest. Catalan countered by grabbing a leg and bringing the Thai crashing down to the canvas.

The Pinoy fighter easily answered the attack and wasted no time by making a quick transition to attempt his trademark heel hook submission.

But Mitsatit was able to survive the leg lock attempt and worked his way back to his feet.

Catalan was pushed back against the fence and got caught with a clean knee to his body.

With the loss, Catalan dropped his record to 8 wins and 6 losses, while Mitsatit picked up his first win since November 2017 to improve to 10-2.

To recall, Catalan dominated Indonesian opponent Stefer Rahardian en route to a unanimous decision victory in their strawweight contest at ONE: Eternal Glory at the Istora Senayan in Jakarta, Indonesia last Jan. 19.

Aside from Catalan, Mark Abelardo and kickboxer Panicos Yusuf also suffered defeats in the match.

Fil-Kiwi Abelardo struggled inside the ring after he bowed to debuting Japanese veteran Shoko Sato.

Fil-Cypriot Yusuf also went home empty-handed after a unanimous decision loss to China’s Zhang Chenglong in a back-and-forth kickboxing bout.