Joshua “The Passion” Pacio will be defending his ONE Strawweight World Title against Rene “The Challenger” Catalan on 8 November at ONE: MASTERS OF FATE in his second reign as the division’s king..
Ever since he reclaimed his title from Yosuke Saruta last April, Pacio has been on the grind back at the Team Lakay gym. After learning that he will get the opportunity to perform in front of his compatriots at the Mall of Asia Arena in the Philippines, Pacio doubled his efforts in hopes of giving fans another excellent performance.
“My preparations for my next bout are great,” Pacio said.
“We’ve been working on some of my weaknesses and strengthening the weapons in my arsenal. As usual, we’ve been focusing on everything because this is mixed martial arts.”
“The Passion” knows better than to underestimate his opponent. Catalan is riding a six-bout winning streak, with exemplary performances that earned him a shot at the ONE Strawweight World Title — a no doubt difficult feat to achieve in a stacked division.
However, the Baguio City native is confident in his preparations leading to the event.
“Anything can happen, especially that my opponent is a veteran in combat sports,” Pacio said.
“I have been preparing for this bout for a long time, and we have seen improvements. There are still a lot of things I need to learn and perfect, but I will make sure that I will be well-rounded in Manila.”
After a series of losses from Team Lakay this year, Pacio is highly-motivated to defend his title in the Philippines. He believes that keeping his world title would boost the morale of his brothers and help them reclaim their respective divisions once more.
“I could not put into words the feeling of being victorious on 8 November,” Pacio said.
“To successfully defend my title in front of my countrymen, in my hometown means a lot to the team and me. I know how hard my brothers worked for their previous bouts, so it’s heartbreaking to see them lose. I want to return the favor and win to motivate them more so we can go back to the top together.”