November 21, 2013

Eric Kelly to Try and Get Back Into the Winning Column When He Faces Jianbo Lu on URCC 24: Uprising

The last time Eric Kelly entered the ring, most people expected him to win. He was after all undefeated and his resume boasted of wins over the likes of Jens Pulver and Mitch Chilson. However, when the fight was stopped in the fourth round, he was at the losing end of the stick. He lost by technical knockout because of an eye injury (which was caused by a legal punch). His opponent, Honorio Banario (someone Kelly used to train with before he relocated to Malaysia), was crowned the new One FC featherweight champion.

It was a competitive fight but Banario won all the rounds leading up to the stoppage in the fourth round. He was busier. He was throwing a lot of kicks. And he was moving around a lot and not giving Kelly any space to set up and land a punch. Watching the fight, you'd think that Banario was the champion and Kelly was the challenger. It was indeed a disappointing loss for Kelly. It was his first loss. His championship belt was taken away from him. He lost to a former team mate. And he received an eye injury as a bitter reminder of the way Banario brought the fight to him.

This coming November 30 at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City, Kelly will attempt to redeem himself and climb his way back to the top. He doesn't intend to lose for the second time in a row, that's for sure. Sharing the ring with him is Jianbo Lu, a Chinese fighter who is proving to be quite an enigma (for the moment at least). Lu, they say is an expert in sanda or sanshou, a fighting technique originating from China that mixes kickboxing, boxing, and wrestling. In a nutshell, sanda covers almost all aspects of MMA. This is definitely something that will instill a bit of worry on anybody fighting him.

Other than that however, not much is known about Lu. Online records don't even agree on his fight resume. URCC says he's 5 and 0. MMA Asia says he's got upwards of 15 fights with an 80% win rate. Sherdog and MMA Core say he fought only one professional fight - a first round TKO win over a fellow Chinese fighter by the name of Jingpeng Liu. In this sport, not knowing anything about your opponent can be a source of a lot of problems. You don't know what you are up against so you don't know how you should go about with your training. Coming up with a game plan would be a huge headache. Most fighters prepare for their fights by watching a lot of their opponent's fight videos. Videos of Lu's fights are non-existent. Kelly, on the other hand, has dozens of his fights plastered all over the web. That said, Lu already has an advantage here. Whether this will help him or not come fight night, fans will soon find out on November 30.

Kelly vs. Lu will be the main event for URCC 24: Uprising. It will be Kelly's seventh fight under the URCC banner. His other previous fights were under One FC.

Also fighting in the undercard of URCC 24 are three Cordillera-based fighters. They are Franklin Donglay, Jay Olod, and Lito Adiwang. Donglay and Olod fights out of Team Torogi. Adiwang fights out of Tribal Submission.

The undercard is as follows:
Igor Subora vs. Marcus Valda
Red Romero vs. Ricardo Sapno III
Roy Doliguez vs. Franklin Donglay
Adrian Hillana vs. Ali Khatibi
Andrew Benibe vs. Onyok Transmonte
Lino Tagacay vs. Jay Olod
Meshaal Al Khuzeem vs. Melchor Cases
Rocky Vergara vs. Ric Myler Empil
Lito Adiwang vs. MJ Abrillo

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