Interim welterweight belt at stake in URCC's 2022 yearender

By Dugout Philippines

MANILA—It's going to be a war among the world’s best MMA fighters with the Philippines battling South Korea in a 3-versus-3 format, while Arvin Chan and Will Chope clash for supremacy in Universal Reality Combat Championship (URCC) 81 Tuesday night at the Cove in Okada Manila ParaƱaque City.

Sugar Ray “Mammoth” Estroso along with former URCC champion Caloy “The Bad Boy” Baduria and Boss Bullet Manlilic will do whatever it takes to keep the Philippines’ undefeated streak in three fights especially in this prestigious main event card entitled Decades of Success.

But the South Koreans composed of Jeong Min-Hun, Choi Won-Tae, and Jeon Young-Jun reminded the Filipinos that they did not travel to the Philippines just to lose. 

“We travel very far so we will do whatever it takes to bring home pride as well,” Jeong said.

Estroso and the rest of the gang welcome the challenge from their South Korean counterparts, saying they are not bothered by the height disparity of their 6-foot, 5-foot-8 and 5-foot-7 foes. 

“Anything can happen inside the cage,” the 5-foot-6 Estroso said. “Once we hit them with punches, they will experience how tough Filipinos are. We never backdown to any challenges or fights.”

URCC founding president Alvin Aguilar believes the 3-versus-3 event would be challenging for team Philippines since they will be facing deadly South Korean fighters. 

“This will be a very challenging fight for the Philippines. I am also curious to see how Caloy Baduria will do in a 3-versus-3 format as this will be his first time,” said Aguilar, who was joined by URCC Global chairman Arnold Vegafria.

Veteran mixed martial artist Arvin Chua expects a difficult fight against American former UFC campaigner Will “The Kill” Chope for their interim URCC welterweight bout in the other main event presented by Okada Manila and supported by Winzir.

“I fought a lot of fighters but I expect this to be more challenging,” Chan (9-5 win-loss card) said. 

But just like the Koreans, the 32-year-old Chope (38-18) won’t go home empty-handed. 

“I want to take the belt to my wife so you need a lot of luck my friend,” he said. “But I must be careful because Arvin Chan has improved greatly.”

Both Chan and Chope reached the welterweight limit at 169.6 pounds after the weigh-in. 

The event is presented by Okada and supported by Winzir.

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In MMA undercard bouts, Dunlee Stewart will face John Tirona in 170 lbs bout followed by Gester Maglaque to meet Mariano Jones of Costa Rica in 185 lbs bout, Kimbert Alintozon will battle Junie Kimayong in 125 lbs affair, Rhyle Lugo will clash against Alex Aballe in 145 lbs, and Eros Baluyot will see action against MJ Abrillo in the 125 lbs bout. 

In the thrilling bare-knuckle actions, Damsa Abrenica meets Joseph “King Pinoy” Cabral while Dondon Serrano squares off with Sherwin Niro and Denzel Dimaguila fights Mark Jalaron.  

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