By Dan Paulo Errazo
Former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang will share the stage with American mixed martial arts legend Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez when the two square off in the main event of ONE: DAWN OF HEROES on August 2 in Manila.
Folayang, who has dreamed of a bout with Alvarez ever since “The Underground King” signed with ONE Championship last year, says he is ready for an intense battle with his American counterpart.
“I was very excited when I heard the news that Eddie Alvarez was next for me,” Folayang said.
“He’s one of the most well-known martial artists in the world. In many ways, he’s a legend. Sharing the ring with him is my honor and privilege. At the same time, I don’t plan on backing down. He deserves the best challenge and I’m going to give it to him. I’m here to represent Asia in this battle between the East and the West.”
Folayang is a few months removed from losing his lightweight title to Japanese legend Shinya Aoki at ONE: A NEW ERA. Alvarez was knocked out by Timofey Nastyukhin in his ONE debut on the same card.
Both men are out for redemption and both are looking at making a run at the ONE Lightweight World Title currently held by Christian Lee.
Folayang and Alvarez are two of the most dynamic offensive forces in the sport, and the Filipino veteran expects nothing but fireworks when the two share the ONE Championship ring at the Mall of Asia Arena.
“I’m going to go toe-to-toe with him. It’s going to be a war and a fight for the fans,” Folayang said.
“Everyone’s going to love what we will do in the ring. I think it will be one of the most exciting fights of the year. Eddie always comes to fight and I never back down from a challenge. I’m ready to go.”
The Baguio City native is putting all his focus on his upcoming bout. A win against an exceptional athlete like Alvarez would be a huge boost for his ascent back to the top spot. This is without a doubt Folayang’s biggest test. As such, “Landslide” is ready to turn in his most spectacular performance to date.
“I’m both spiritually and mentally ready for this fight,” Folayang concluded.
“Right now, we’re just polishing our skills, making sure I’m as sharp as possible on the day of the fight. No doubt, this is going to be one of the biggest challenges of my career. I never imagined I would be able to face a really big name and one of the most popular fighters in the world. I have to be on point so I can give a good performance. I have to be accurate and precise with my techniques.”