Geje Eustaquio is frequently referred to as the second best Filipino flyweight. Until recently he has remained in the shadow of his more illustrious teammate Rey Docyogen. In 15 minutes at ONE FC: Era of Champions, that all changed as the 25-year-old scored career defining victory over Kentaro Watanabe.
The Team Lakay standout survived a torrid first round to turn the fight around with a composed performance that showcased some newfound maturity as he executed his game plan to perfection to pick apart the much more experienced Watanabe.
There was a certain precision about the Filipino’s work as he avoided Watanabe’s trademark right hand, while constantly scoring with punches, kicks and knees. The Japanese fighter could not live with his opponent’s superior stamina and work rate and Eustaquio was understandably pleased with his performance.
“I felt fine in the first round and I don’t think I was ever in danger of getting stopped, but I knew I was behind and I think I made up for it in the second and third rounds because I was moving well. I felt relaxed and I think my spirit and will in the last two rounds were greater than his.”
With the win, Eustaquio secured a shot at the inaugural ONE FC flyweight title. It is the opportunity of a lifetime and he says he was well aware of the fight’s significance before it began.
“Many people were saying that the winner would fight for the title, but we did not know for sure until Sir Victor Cui informed us a few days before the fight. It was definitely a big motivation for me because my dream is to be the first ONE FC flyweight champion,” he said.
Eustaquio was an interested spectator as Adriano Moraes submitted Kosuke Suzuki in the main event at the Mata Elang International Stadium because by that stage he knew that they were fighting for the right to face him for the inaugural 125-pound belt.
The Brazilian showcased an outstanding ground game to smother Suzuki for the first two rounds before finishing him with an arm triangle choke in the third and Eustaquio believes he knows exactly what to expect from Moraes.
“I watched the fight with Mark Sangiao, my coach, and we know that he will try to take me down and submit me and I will train hard at Team Lakay to make sure I am ready for that. I’m very confident I can beat Adriano Moraes.”
His nickname is “Gravity,” but Eustaquio could just as easily be known as “the Baby Faced Assassin” because hidden behind the mild mannered exterior is a mixed martial artist of real aggression who will always look to take the fight to an opponent.
The fight with Moraes is likely to take place towards the end of the year, which gives Eustaquio plenty of time to prepare and Team Lakay enough notice to scour the region in order to find suitable sparring partners.
He will undoubtedly be an underdog against the Brazilian, who is already being tipped to become the flyweight division’s answer to Bibiano Fernandes, but Eustaquio is improving rapidly and believes fervently he is ready to become a champion by beating one of the division’s elite.
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