Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Belingon, Catalan to fight for Philippine honor at One FC Kings and Champions

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Belingon, Catalan to fight for Philippine honor at One FC Kings and Champions
by rick olivares

Two Filipino fighters will be in the fight card for One Fighting Championship: Kings and Champions this coming April 5 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

Kevin Belingon, who finally won his first One FC match in three outings with a first round technical knockout of Russian Yusup Saadulaev last October 6, 2012 also in Singapore, will be up against Vietnamese fighter Thanh “Alladin” Vu in a bantamweight match.

The 20-year old Vu defeated Malaysian Mohd Fouzien who is eight years his senior in his One FC debut for a 5-0-1 record. Vu decked Fouzien with a left-right combination barely a minute into the fight. He threw a few more punches while landing four knees to the Malaysian’s head and body before Japanese referee Kenichi Serizawa put the match to an end.

Belingon, the Ifugao native fighting out of Baguio City and who currently holds a 10-2 record is wary of his opponent. “I don't have much information on him because his fight was so short. But from what I can see he is quite technical with his standup. I will make sure I do not leave any openings and I will attack him when I get the chance. I am confident I will win this fight.”

Belingon has not fought competitively in the last six months but despite the ring rust, he believes it will not be a factor. “Absolutely not,” said the Team Lakay fighter who is looking forward to advancing in the One FC’s Bantamweight Grand Prix Final. “I have been concentrating on getting better with each training session and I a few new moves up my sleeve now. The version of me you will see on April 5th will be so much better than anything you have seen in the past. In Team Lakay, we push ourselves so hard in training that a layoff will not affect me. “

He helped out in the training of  fellow Tam Lakay fighters Rey Docyogen and Honorio Banario who both fought in last February’s One FC: Return of Warriors at Kuala Lumpur. Banario defeated fellow Filipino Eric Kelly while Shinichi Kojima defeated Docyogen via submission.

Newcomer Rene Catalan will be facing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu specialist Alex Silva in a flyweight match as part of the undercards.

Catalan, a native of Santa Barbara, Iloilo is a four-time Wushu World Champion and an Asian Games Gold Medalist who one coached the Canadian National Wushu Team.

As a youngster, Catalan competed in boxing, taekwondo and other combat sports before eventually finding his niche in combat sports.  

He is excited to make his debut at One FC: Kings and Champions. “One FC is the home of champions and since I have been champion at my branch of martial arts, I was signed. I am excited to test my skills against champions of other disciplines. 

Despite facing a world champion in Alex Silva in his maiden fight outside the Philippines, Catalan debunked any nervousness. “I have competed in Wushu and Sanshou competitions all over the world so this is nothing new for me. I am more excited than nervous to walk out to 12,000 screaming fans in the Singapore Indoor Stadium.”

Regarding the Brazilian whose submissions are world-class, Catalan is optimistic of his chances: “I think this is a classic striker versus grappler matchup. I hope to stay on my feet and land a few strikes on him. I will finish him standing, no doubt about it.”   

One FC: Kings and Champions will be headlined by a Lightweight World Championship showdown between submission ace Shinya Aoki and our reigning Lightweight World Champion Kotetsu Boku and broadcast live on Star Sports across Asia. This historic moment will mark the first time ever a live Mixed Martial Arts event will be broadcast on the network.

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