Filipino-American fighter Mark “Mugen” Striegl of Fist Gym validated his status as an Asian mixed martial arts (MMA) superstar by hacking out a hard-earned unanimous decision victory over South Korean Kim Ki-Sung of BK Wang Ho/Top Gym BF recently in their featherweight bout in the Casino Filipino (CF) Battle Extreme Tournament of Superstars (Bets) IV at CF Mactan in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu.
Striegl, who hiked his professional ring record to an impressive 17 wins against two defeats, failed to capitalize on certain occasions that he was able to take Kim to the floor but managed to deliver several solid blows to the head and body of his Korean foe to earn the nod of the judges.
With his latest victory, the 29-year-old warrior appeared headed for a much-awaited titular tiff with Sung’s training partner, Universal Reality Combat Championship (URCC) featherweight champion Do Gyeom Lee. Lee was so vexed with the loss of his compatriot that he belittled Striegl’s triumph and challenged the latter to face him for his next fight.
“How can he be called an Asian MMA superstar when he doesn’t have a title? I don’t see anything special with the way he fought tonight,” Lee said of Striegl, whom he engaged in trash talk and stare down on the ring after the fight.
The fierce exchange of words between Striegl and Lee seems to generate spark and excitement ahead of the fifth installment of the highly-successful CF Bets series, which the URCC holds in partnership with the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor). CF Bets V is slated in Manila on March 2018.
“We won’t have a hard time promoting CF Bets V, that’s for sure. The trash talk episode between Mark Striegl and Do Gyeom Lee serves as an advance promotion of the next MMA event happening in one of our casinos and which we’re certain about drawing multitude of MMA fans again,” said an elated Bong Quintana, Pagcor’s Assistant VP for Entertainment.
Meanwhile, in the co-main event of the fight spectacle, The Den MNL’s Arvin Chan made short work of Joel Jabonero of Calma-MMA by submitting the latter via “Kimura” or arm lock in the one minute mark of the opening round of their welterweight bout.
In other matches of the eight-fight card, Adonis Sevillano scored a unanimous decision over Arnel Ylanan of Deftac Vagabong MMA, while Roel Rosauro (Yaw-Yan Ardigma Cebu) won by split decision against fellow Cebuano Alexander Aballe (Yawchedelic MMA). Baguio City’s Ariel Lampacan (Subsports PH) prevailed by referee-stopped contest over Giovanie Macasling (Calma MMA) after pinning the latter to the floor with relentless striking in the 1:08 mark of the first round. Another fighter from Baguio City, Lucky Mateo (Fight Corp), hardly broke a sweat after forcing Charles Sayson (Oryx MMA Qatar) into submission via choke in just 36 seconds of the opening round.
Former national wrestling team member Roque Mana-ay (Catalan Fighting System) prevailed via split decision over Korean Young Bin Kwon (BK Wang Ho/TOP Gym BF), while Mountain Province pride Dave Banguingui (Fight Corp) proved too much for the flamboyant Ariel “Lady Boxer” Oliveros as he punched his way to a unanimous decision win.