ONE bantamweight (61.3 - 65.8kg)
RESULT: Belingon wins by unanimous decision
One of the night’s most anticipated match-ups turned out to be among the least exciting for fans, as Filippino wushu expert Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon defeated Tajikistan’s Muin Gafurov in a numbing threeround bout of evasions and point-counting. Belingon prepared for Gafurov’s versatile ground game, and the training paid off in a mostly standing fight that saw Belingon score via high and low kicks while Gafurov, 20 years old and looking to reverse course after his first career loss in April, saw repeated efforts to take down his opponent frustrated.
With neither fighter having landed a blow two minutes into the first round, the crowd began wildly calling for a “hit”. Gafurov had a chance for a hold at the end of the first round before he was interrupted the bell. The second round saw much of the same, with Belingon continuing to land low kicks and knees. The third round also featured plenty of dancing, and in the end, judges ruled in favour of Belingon, whose lightning wushu strikes notched him enough points for victory.
Photo: Nyan Zay Htet