As Moises Ilogon ponders his next move, he leaves the door wide open for the possibility of returning to his Muay Thai roots under the ONE Friday Fights banner.
The 23-year-old Cagayan De Oro native made a resounding promotional debut at ONE Friday Fights 39 last November 3, defeating Cho Joon Gun by way of a third-round technical knockout in a strawweight mixed martial arts (MMA) clash.
This victory not only improved his professional record to 3-0, but it also marked a triumphant return to the sport after a long layoff that began in 2018.
But before venturing into the multifaceted world of MMA, Ilogon started his combat sports journey as a striker with a background in Muay Thai.
His expertise in “The Art of Eight Limbs” earned him three national titles. Moreover, he clinched the bronze medal in Kun Khmer — a Cambodian martial art that shares the same dynamics with Muay Thai — at the 32nd Southeast Asian Games earlier this year.
Now, with Muay Thai being the flagship sport on the weekly ONE Friday Fight series, “The Lion King” sees an opportunity to showcase his proficiency in his core discipline.
“Of course, especially if ONE gives me the opportunity, why not? I will accept that,” Ilogon told Tiebreaker Times.
It would be an opportune moment for Ilogon to switch fields, given that ONE Championship is currently placing significant emphasis on striking in its events.
Back in 2018, the organization introduced ONE Super Series, putting the spotlight on Muay Thai and kickboxing.
This bold move has paid off handsomely for ONE Championship, attracting a long list of notable names such as Rodtang Jitmuangnon, Superlek Kitamoo9, Jonathan Haggerty, Chingiz Allazov, and Superbon Singha Mawynn.
Despite its success, the Philippines has been underrepresented in the league for strikers, with a few exceptions like Ryan Jakiri, Jackie Buntan, and KC Carlos
Ilogon seems amenable to taking a detour if he gets selected to be the country’s standard bearer for ONE Super Series.
“If they offer me to fight in Muay Thai, I’m ready,” he quipped.
For now, Ilogon maintains his focus on MMA, with aspirations of achieving a winning streak akin to his compatriots Carlos Alvarez, Carlo Bumina-ang, and Fritz Biagtan.
“Right now, my priority is MMA. This is where I see myself having the potential to shine and succeed,” he stated.
“If it were up to me, I’d rather accept a bout offer that will benefit my MMA career.”
Ilogon remains hopeful for a return call from ONE Friday Fights, confident that his scintillating maiden appearance has left a lasting impression that will warrant another chance to strut his wares in the promotion.
“I hope that by early 2024, we can compete again in ONE Friday Fights. My performance in my debut was impressive, so I am confident that I will get another opportunity to show off my talent,” he said.