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Long layoff will work to Joshua Pacio’s advantage, training partners say

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Long layoff will work to Joshua Pacioâs advantage, training partners say
Joshua Pacio
ONE Championship

MANILA, Philippines – ONE Strawweight World Champion Joshua Pacio will return to action for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began, fighting in ONE: Revolution on September 24.

While some might see Pacio's 20-month break as a disadvantage, especially in a title defense against his storied rival Yosuke Saruta, his new training mates in Team Lakay have a different take on the issue.

Jhanlo Sangiao and Jomar Pa-ac joined the Philippines' only remaining champion in the Singapore promotion in his training camp for his third fight with Saruta.

And with what they have seen from their Team Lakay stablemate, the layoff has only made Pacio even stronger.

"Marami siyang bagong skills, marami siyang na-adopt ngayong pandemic," said Sangiao.

"Mahaba yung training camp. Kaya expect niyo ang bagong Joshua Pacio [sa laban]," he added.

Pa-ac, for his part, noted that going a long time without a fight has made Pacio more motivated and eager to win.

"Si Joshua matagal din yung layoff niya, pero kahit ganun katagal hindi pa rin nawala yung focus niya sa training... Expect niyo si Joshua Pacio na mas gutom sa laro," said Pa-ac.

Fans can also expect a more versatile attack plan for the defending champion.

"Makikita natin ang well-rounded [niya], mapa-wrestling man yan or striking. Kayang kaya," he said.

As for how the fight will end for Pacio, his training mates both see him defending his belt for the third time in a row.

"Para sa akin, hindi yata mapupunta sa judges hands [ang result]," said Pa-ac.

"Maybe finished through submission or knockout," he added.

Pacio and Saruta's trilogy fight will be a co-main event in ONE: Revolution where three world titles will be at stake.

The main event will be Christian Lee defending his ONE Lightweight World Championship against Ok Rae Yoon.

Also in the card is Pacio's stablemate Lito Adiwang, and Roel Rosauro.

MMA ONE CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM LAKAY
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