When the decision was read after the grueling five-round main event of ONE: Eternal Glory, it spelled disappointment for Joshua Pacio.
In a match-up too close to call, Pacio was on the receiving end of a razor-thin, split decision loss to drop the ONE Strawweight World Championship to Yosuke Saruta.
The match was so tight it could have been decided on a coin flip.
But as the champion, the 23-year-old Pacio – who celebrated his birthday last January 10 – believes that he should have had the advantage. Moreover, he wants an immediate rematch due to the closeness of the bout.
“Gusto ko talagang mag-rematch agad pero, yun nga, depende ulit sa ONE yan,” he shared after the bout.
After a first round, that saw the Japanese fighter on top for the majority of the stanza, Pacio was able to get it going in the second round. The third round was extremely tight, with both athletes throwing fists and firing wild.
But Saruta was able to get at least two back in the final two rounds, as he controlled Pacio with take downs.
Again, it could have gone either way.
The new champion made it known that he is willing to fight anyone at any given time.
“I’ll fight anyone at any time,” he declared in his native tongue.
But for Pacio, he is eager to return to Baguio so he can get back to the drawing board and resume training as soon as possible.
“Para sa akin motivated ako na bumalik ulit,” declared the young gun, who lost his third pro fight in 21 tries.
“Hindi na ako makapaghintay na makapag-training ulit at bumalik sa cage.”
Any place, any time.
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