The Philippine Sportswriters Association is set to acknowledge the best of Philippine sports in the previous year at the SMC-PSA Annual Awards Night on February 26, 2019. Four of the honorees are ONE Championship athletes training out of Team Lakay in Baguio City, Philippines.
Filipino superstars Eduard “Landslide” Folayang, Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon, Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio, Joshua “The Passion” Pacio and Brandon “The Truth” Vera are set to be cited after claiming World Title victories in ONE Championship. They accumulated an astonishing record of 12-0 last year as the Filipino athletes shone in The Home Of Martial Arts.
“It’s an honor definitely,” Folayang said. “It’s always a blessing to be in this position and be recognized for what we do. We hope that through this, we will continue to inspire others.”
Folayang reclaimed his ONE Lightweight World Title when he defeated Singapore’s Amir Khan by way of unanimous decision last November at ONE: CONQUEST OF CHAMPIONS, the same night Vera defended his ONE Heavyweight World Title against Mauro “The Hammer” Cerilli of Italy. Belingon finally got his hands on the ONE Bantamweight World Champion when he defeated Bibiano Fernandes via split decision in a highly-anticipated rematch at ONE: HEART OF THE LION this past November.
Eustaquio and Pacio also won World Titles the past year. But unfortunately dropped those titles early this year.
Vera and the Team Lakay fighters will be joined by several notable names in other sports which include WBO mini flyweight champion Vic Saludar and Manny Pacquiao’s trainer Buboy Fernandez. Weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz, skateboarder Margielyn Didal, and golfers Yuka Saso, Bianca Pagdanganan, and Lois Kaye Go, all gold medal winners at the 2018 Asian Games will be awarded with the coveted Athlete of the Year honors.
Here are Folayang, Belingon, Pacio and Eustaquio in a post-fight press conference in 2018: