Muñoz gets win in farewell match against Barnatt

Dennis Acosta
By Ivan Saldajeno

PASAY—Even in his last MMA fight, Mark Muñoz showcased how Filipinos battle in combat sports.

Muñoz showed heart and ended an impressive MMA career on a high note as he defeated Luke Barnatt in their bout at UFC Fight Night Philippines at the Mall of Asia Arena just as the day shifted from Saturday to Sunday.

In the match that started at 11:45 p.m. and ended just moments after midnight, Muñoz took the taller and lengthier Barnatt by surprise by landing significant strikes early in Round 1 before banking on his patented ground game later in the period.

Barnatt slightly bounced back in the second round after getting some shots at Muñoz, but the latter once again controlled the match in the final five minutes with his striking and grappling.

One judge gave it 29-28, while the other two had it 30-27 all for Muñoz, who finished his career with 14 wins and six losses.

Meanwhile, Barnatt lost for only the second time after 11 fights.

With his playing career done, Muñoz will now focus on coaching as he plans to put up a wrestling school here in the Philippines.