Submission Sport Philippines’ Roy Doliguez (6-2) went into hostile territory last Friday for a chance to win a world championship.
Even with just 28 days to prepare for his five-round affair against Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke for the inaugural ONE World Strawweight Championship, Doliguez displayed amazing heart in the match that proved that he belonged in mixed martial arts. “The Dominator” was relentless even when rocked by the kicks and elbows of his opponent, a former Muay Thai champion, that tested Roy’s iron chin.
DSA dominated Doliguez for the first three rounds of the match as he outstruck and outgrappled the Filipino but in the fourth round, the native of Sarangani took his opponent down with 2:33 remaining. Doliguez kept busy on the ground and eventually had the Thai locked in a north-south position. Doliguez landed huge knees to the head of DSA but the referee, Joey Lepiten, controversially stood them up. “Tinayo sila agad kahit wala man lang warning,” Submission Sport Philippines coach Erwin Tagle told us.
Prior to the takedown, tt the 4:45 mark of the round, the match had to be halted due to an inadvertent eye poke by DSA. Then at the 3:58 point of the fourth, the Thai again committed an accidental foul, this time an accidental low kick to the groin area. The eye poke earlier eventually resulted to this:
The doctors wanted to stop the fight that is why the rest time for Doliguez took the full five minutes. “Mental toughness na lang. To the death ang mind set namin,” Tagle stressed. “Takot ‘yung doctor. Ayaw na siya pa tuloy kasi pwede daw siya mabulag. Sabi ko ‘no way!’ We will take the belt and fight to the death!”
Even with the added handicap of blurry vision, Doliguez continued but was again a victim of another accidental foul, this time a head butt at the 3:38 mark of the final round. “Nag wave na lang bigla si Joey [Lepiten] na tapos na ang laban. Di naman umayaw [si Roy]. Nag protest ako kay Matt Hume. Sabi niya no more [penalty] time outs kaya judges na lang,” Tagle recalled.
The result of the match broke Roy Doliguez’s heart as seen in the Facebook post he posted hours after the fight.
In the match, not only did Doliguez impress the Filipino MMA fans, but also the President of ONE Championship. “He will get another shot daw sabi ni Victor [Cui]. Roy is tough,” Tagle told us. “And it might be in Manila!”
With his hopes up, Roy Doliguez closed the interview with this.
“Rematch is our plan.”