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Mixed Martial Arts

Kevin Belingon braces for ‘toughest fighter he will ever face’

No. 1 ranked bantamweight Kevin Belingon faces one of the toughest opponents he will ever face on Friday come ONE: Inside The Matrix III.

In order to get another title shot, the former ONE Bantamweight World Champion will have to triumph over 16-fight UFC veteran John Lineker (32-9).

And Belingon knows that he will have a tough night at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

“John Lineker is one of the toughest fighters I will ever face.

“He’s not an opponent to be taken lightly. He’s got a lot of experience, and a lot of power in his hands, which is why he is known to end fights early,” said the 33-year-old Belingon (19-7).

“We have watched his previous fights and we’re confident we can come up with the right game plan for whatever he brings to the table. I have to win this fight to prove that I deserve to stay as the number one contender,” he continued.

The Belingon-Lineker showdown will no doubt be a crowd-pleasing treat given the way the two fighters rarely leave anything inside the cage in their fights.

Both martial artists hover above a 40-percent knockout finish ratio in their wins and appear equally matched on the ground.

“You all know how I fight, I fight moving forward. So this is going to be a very exciting matchup. I don’t think this is going the distance, with the way we both attack. I want to put on a good show for the fans,” said Belingon.

“I’ve prepared the same way, just like I have prepared for my previous fights. I never underestimate any of my opponents. That’s not a good thing to do inside the Circle. Every fight is dangerous.”

Belingon remains confident ahead of this matchup and believes a victory will put him in a good position for another crack at the title. He’s spent the past few months honing his skills in Baguio City, despite a national lockdown due to COVID-19, and even saw the birth of his daughter, Kelsey, just this past August.

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“The Silencer” says he is motivated to succeed now more than ever.

“I’m ecstatic to compete because it’s already been a year since my last fight. The situation we are in right now has truly affected everyone in the industry. Every fighter, including myself, has had to slow things down a little bit and stay isolated in quarantine so we don’t contract the virus,” said Belingon.

“The birth of my daughter has really added extra motivation for me to succeed. I am fighting to give my family a better life, and that’s a powerful thing.”

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