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Folayang bracing for ‘invincible’ Nguyen

Lightweight kingpin Eduard Folayang | Philstar.com File Photo

MANILA, Philippines – Eduard Folayang is well aware that with historic bouts come historic stakes.

With him and Martin Nguyen on a collision course for ONE Championship’s first-ever cross-over title match, the Team Lakay skipper shared that he is bracing for a nearly invincible foe.

“I am prepared for the best Martin Nguyen possible — one [who] has no weaknesses,” the Baguio City native and current lightweight champion said.”

“He's a great martial artist and an amazing competitor. He's earned the highest degree of my respect. There is absolutely no chance that I am coming into this bout underestimating him,” the homegrown striker said of his foe.

Nguyen, a 28-year-old fighter from Australia, is the newly minted featherweight kingpin. He bowed to then-defending titleholder Marat Gafurov on short notice, making it his first and lone loss. He bounced back in August to unseat the Russian.

“[He] shocked the world in his last bout. Gafurov is not an easy opponent, but Martin showed incredible toughness and tenacity,” Folayang said of his upcoming assignment.

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“It brought back a lot of memories of my victory against Shinya [Aoki],” he offered.

If Folayang falls to Nguyen, the latter becomes the first two-division champion of the promotion. The return heavily favors the challenger as the reward for the defender is only that: a successful title defense.

“I am preparing for the best Martin possible. That is the only way I can prepare to be at my best. I believe this match is going to be a battle between two high-level martial artists and world champions,” Folayang said.

“Fans have definitely never seen anything like this. It is going to be a battle from start to finish,” added the 18-5 wushu practitioner.

Folayang and Nguyen lock horns in the main event of “Legends of the World” on November 11 at the Mall of Asia Arena. The card, which is one of the three high-profile showpieces slated on the same month, begins at 7 p.m.

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