September 17, 2021 at 09:35 pm
On his third showdown with Yosuke Saruta, Joshua Pacio vowed to stay unbroken and keep his fighting spirit intact.
Pacio said this a week before defending his ONE Strawweight World Championship in a trilogy match against Saruta.
Saruta has promised to break Pacio’s psyche on fight night of their strawweight encounter in ONE Championship: Revolution on September 24 in Singapore.
“Iyun ang gusto niyang gawin sa akin, hindi iyun mangyayari,” said the 25-year-old Pacio on Zoom yesterday.
He will be defending his strawweight title for the third time after he disposed of Alex Silva at ONE Championship: Fire and Fury on Jan. 31, winning a very close bout via split decision.
Pacio lost his belt to Saruta at ONE Championship: Eternal Glory on Jan. 19, 2019 in a controversial split-decision.
In a rematch three months later, Pacio, playing at ONE Championship: Roots of Honor in Manila on April 12, scored a sensational fourth-round knockout win with a well-timed knee to regain his lost title.
In that fight, the 5’4” Pacio recalled that he was the one who shook Saruta’s confidence.
“Pagkatapos ko siyang tamaan sa tiyan, tumingin siya corner niya. So at that time, alam ko, na break ko iyung fighting spirit niya,” said Pacio.
The look on Saruta’s eyes, according to Pacio said it all.
This time, Pacio said he will be ready for Saruta, knowing that his Japanese challenger has improved since their last showdown 29 months ago.
The 34-year-old Saruta earned the right challenge Pacio when he beat Yoshitaka Naito at Road to One 3: Tokyo Fight Night on September 10, 2020 via unanimous decision.