Filipina fighters Zamboanga, Carlos featured in ONE Thai event

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ONE Championship atomweight fighter Denice Zamboanga of the Philippines. — ONE CHAMPIONSHIP

ONE Championship holds another live event in Bangkok, Thailand, on Friday and it will feature two Filipina fighters out to do well and give their respective careers a boost.

Denice “The Menace” Zamboanga and Filipino-American KC “Pinay Fight” Carlos are part of the card for “ONE: A New Breed” happening at the Impact Arena.

Ms. Zamboanga will take on Thai national judo champion Watsapinya “Dream Girl” Kaewkhong in a three-round atomweight battle while Ms. Carlos collides with top prospect Wondergirl Fairtex of Thailand in a three round muay thai contest in four-ounce gloves.

“My preparations for this fight have gone very well. I’m on weight, in fact, even a little under. I’m very excited for my next fight,” said Ms. Zamboanga in the lead-up to the event.

The fight, Ms. Zamboanga said, has added significance to her since she gets to go into action on the same night that his brother, Drex, makes his ONE debut.

Drex Zamboanga, the Universal Reality Combat Championship bantamweight champion, will make his ONE debut against Thai Detchadin Sornsirisuphatin in a flyweight clash.

“I’m excited for his ONE Championship debut. Hopefully, we will both be successful in both of our fights. The goal has always been to become brother and sister world champions,” said Ms. Zamboanga.

Ms. Zamboanga has made it known that she is looking forward to getting a shot at the atomweight title currently held by long-time champion Angela “The Unstoppable” Lee of Singapore, and that she is using her upcoming fight as a springboard to that.

“I took this fight because I want to stay active, especially now that national borders are still closed. I grabbed the opportunity to fight in Thailand, since I’m already here. I’m not underestimating my opponent (Watsapinya Kaewkhong) at all,” she said.

Adding, “At this level, every opponent is top-notch. Once everything goes back to normal, I know I will meet Angela Lee at some point. We’ve trained very hard. Our conditioning is great. We have a great game plan heading into this matchup.”

Ms. Zamboanga (4-0) won her first two matches in ONE in convincing fashion.

She debuted in December last year in Malaysia, earning a unanimous decision victory over hometown bet Hayatun Jihin Radzuan.

Then in February in Singapore, she followed it up with another unanimous decision win against veteran Mei Yamaguchi of Japan.

Meanwhile, Thailand-based Carlos, 23, will be making her ONE Super Series debut and wants to leave a lasting impression.

“From all the hard work put into this fight camp, I will fight my heart out and try to put on a good show,” said Ms. Carlos.

But she recognizes that she is up against tough competition in Wondergirl.

“She (Wondergirl) is a tough and skilled fighter. I’m confident I will perform well, and give it all I got. It would be amazing to get the win and I will try my best to achieve that,” said Ms. Carlos.

“I haven’t really gotten the chance to connect to my Filipino roots, at least not as much as I want to because I’ve been living in Thailand for a very long time. Filipinos have a strong heart and I am bringing my heart into this fight,” she added.

“ONE: A New Breed” will be headlined by the atomweight muay thai world championship clash between reigning champ Stamp Fairtex of Thailand and challenger Allycia Hellen Rodrigues of Brazil.

The event will be broadcast live in the Philippines over ONE Sports+ and ONE Sports. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo