article appears courtesy of www.seamma.com
Martial Combat 5 Review
by James Goyder
History was made at Resorts World Sentosa tonight when for the first time ever in Singapore two female MMA fighters faced off at Martial Combat 5. There may only a handful of female mixed martial artists in the region but there are still some quality fighters to be found and two of them were on display tonight. Claire Haigh is one of the best female Muay Thai fighters on the planet and has held world titles at two separate weights. Haigh, who is from England but is currently based in Phuket, is a veteran of MMA fights in Australia and Thailand. Jiau is an accomplished wrestler and a national Sanda champion which made for an intruiging clash of styles.
If the audience at Resorts World Sentosa were unsure what to expect from the ladies they got a definitive answer from this fight; non stop action. It was a back and forth war which captured the imagination of the Resorts World Sentosa Crowd and was a fantastic advert for female MMA. Both fighters played their part in what was undoubtedly the fight of the night.
Haigh was the aggressor throughout the first round, moving forwards constantly but Jiau landed some extremely effective counter hooks. Haigh secured a takedown late in the round and swiftly moved from side control to mount but the round finishes before she could do any real damage.
Haigh secured another takedown early in round two and took Jiau’s back. She sank her hooks in and looked for the rear naked choke but was unable to finish the fight. The fighters got to their feet and the same pattern continued for the remainder of the round with Haigh stalking her opponent but eating a number of punches on the way in.
In the third round it appeared that the straight knees landed by Haigh in the Muay Thai clinch were starting to have a cumulative effect on Jiau who started to tire. Haigh was able to take the fight to the floor and mount her opponent and land a series of brutal elbows causing the referee to step in and stop the fight.
Eduard Folayang has already tasted victory in the Martial Combat cage but tonight for the very first time he faced adversity, against accomplished Chinese fighter Bao She Ri Gu Leng.
Folayang is one of the best fighters to emerge from the Philippines and is in action at Martial Combat for the second successive month, having claimed a first round submission victory over Egon Racz at Martial Combat 4. His opponent nicknamed the Warlord is also undefeated with five wins out of five and Asian pride was on the line at Resorts World.
Any doubts over warlords credentials are swiftly dispelled as the two exchange on their feet in a very technical opening round. This is clearly a well matched fight between two extremely proficient MMA practitioners but Warlord is getting the better of the opening exchanges.
Folayang was keen to take the fight to the floor because Warlord seems to have the advantage on the feet. The Mongolian is clearly enjoying the fight and he drops his hands and taunts Folayang. With a smile permanently etched across his features Warlord narrowly misses with a couple of head kicks in round three before landing a huge right hand which rocks Folayang. The Filipino is clearly hurt but he somewhat recklessly chooses to stand and trade and is abel to secure a vital takedown. Warlord is able to get to his feet but Folayang secures another takedown and starts to land some ground and pound. The tide of the fight appears to have changed and Warlord is not smiling anymore.
The paces slows a little in round four. Warlord lands a couple of right hands but Folayang appears to have slightly more left in the gas tank and is starting to edge the rounds. The final round follows the same pattern, exchanges are few and far between but Folayang is getting the better of them and he is able to take Warlord down again and land some ground and pound.
All three judges award the contest to Folayang but Warlord deserves tremendous credit for making it such an entertaining contest. This was a huge test for the Filipino who showed tremendous resilience to bounce back after losing the opening rounds. In being crowned the Martial Combat 5 Superfight Champion Folayang demonstrated that not only does he have the necessary technique to be a top fighter, he also has the heart.
Always humble Folayang admitted afterwards that he had work to do, ‘I had a tough fight tonight, he was very quick. My last night was only ago so my conditioning is good but I still have a lot of room for improvement. I am proud that so many Filipino people came to see me fight and I would like to thank them all,’ he said.
The opening contest of the night was a three round war of attrition between Kian Pham from Vietnam and Jiang Long Yun from China. Jiang was the slightly more effective fighter throughout the fight, consistently picking Pham apart with a series of well timed punches. Pham managed to get a couple of takedowns which was enough to convince one of the judges to score the fight a draw but the other two gave the win to Jiang by majority decision.
Bill Saures was at a considerable size disadvantage against enormous South Korean Joon Soo Lim in a heavyweight contest. Joon has all the demanour of a gentle giant and is a huge crowd favourite in Singapore. At one point he paused he fight to help his opponent up to the amusement of spectators. It proved to be a prudent decision as once the fighters were standing Joon wasted little time in knocking Saures out.
Local favourite Leandro Issa, who trains at Evolve MMA in Singapore easily dispensed of the challenge of Ramsey Dewey with a first round submission win coming by way of Kimura. This is the second Martial Combat win in quick succession for the highly rated Brazilian submission specialist.