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Vera would rather be nervous ahead of title defense

Brandon Vera see nervousness as a drive to strive further in his MMA career. Rick Johnsen Dela Cruz
By Ivan Saldajeno

PARANAQUE--Brandon Vera admitted on Tuesday during the press conference of One: Conquest of Champions at the City of Dreams Grand Ballroom that he is nervous about the second defense of his One heavyweight title against Mauro Cerilli on Friday night.

After all, this is Vera's first mixed martial arts fight in two years, or since he successfully defended his belt against Hideki Sekine on Dec. 2, 2016 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay.

[Related Story: Vera retains HW belt, Bibiano Fernandes continues longest One reign]

One can count the long layoff and the fact that Cerilli, like Vera, is a heavy hitter as possible reasons why Vera said so.

But Vera later said that he would rather be in this state than be too confident, even adding that this motivates him to fight at his best.

"If I'll stop being nervous, I'll stop fighting," the defending champ said.

He, on the other hand, insisted that the long layoff will not hamper his cause.

"Kinakabahan, oo, pero kalawang, hindi," Vera vowed.

He and Cerilli collide in the headliner of One: Conquest of Champions on Friday night at the MOA Arena.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno