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Vera retires from MMA after Aliakbari loss, Eustaquio's streak ends

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Vera retires from MMA after Aliakbari loss, Eustaquio's streak ends
Brandon Vera
ONE Championship

MANILA, Philippines — After two decades in mixed martial arts, Brandon Vera has called it a career after a TKO loss to Amir Aliakbari of Iran at ONE 164: Pacio vs Brooks here at the Mall of Asia Arena.

Vera, 45, announced his retirement from MMA in the post-fight interview inside the ONE Circle.

The Filipino-American was a former ONE heavyweight champion and has been in the industry since 2002.

"Kababayan, ang tagal ko nang ginagawa ito. You just witnessed my final fight," said Vera after the bout.

But Vera rued that he could not give the Filipinos a win in his last fight as he fell victim to Aliakbari's striking.

A flurry of punches saw Vera floored at the 3:37 mark of the opening round, prompting the referee stoppage.

Fans present at the venue gave the MMA veteran a standing ovation as he exited the ONE Circle. He finished his MMA career with a 16-10 record.

Meanwhile, Geje Eustaquio could not extend his win streak to three bouts, falling via first round knockout against Hu Yong.

Eustaquio attempted to use his grappling against the Chinese's striking after it was clear that Yong had the heavier punches.

But the former ONE flyweight titlist was caught in a solid right hook that sent him to the canvas after 4:43 in the opening round.

Yong thus derailed Eustaquio's bid to return to the title picture. He also earned a $US50,000 bonus on the way.

Eustaquio fell to 14-9 while Yong hiked his record to 10-4.

BRANDON VERA

MMA

ONE CHAMPIONSHIP

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