Three Pinoy Fighters to Showcase Skills in Vegas

by Joseph Pimentel/AJPress
LAS VEGAS – Three Filipino fighters will be showcased in different bouts in Las Vegas this Saturday, July 26.
FilAm Muay Thai fighters Michael Mananquil and Christine Toledo will co-headline a World Championship Muay Thai event at the Las Vegas Hilton. At the same time, Boxer Bernabe Concepcion will be featured in the undercard of the Miguel Cotto vs. Antonio Margarito championship bout at the MGM Grand Las Vegas.

Mananquil from the San Francisco Bay area is defending his World Boxing Council (WBC) Intercontinental Muay Thai belt against an opponent to be announced. The 26-year-old welterweight said it’s frustrating that the promoters have changed his opponent on him three times.

“I really don’t know whom I’m fighting,” he said to the Asian Journal. “I’m just going to come prepared.”

Mananquil is known as a balanced Muay Thai fighter. His last match in Las Vegas ended in a knockout. Mananquil said he knocked his opponent out with a sharp elbow.

Unlike Mananquil, Toledo knows whom she is fighting against.

Ruth Ashdown is the current International Kickboxing Federation (IKF) British Flyweight Champion. She is considered one of the best fighters in the United Kingdom.

“I have my work cut out for me,” said Toledo, who holds the World Kickboxing Association US (WKA) and the Muay Thai International Association (MTIA) World Title. “I’m really expecting her to give me her best. Everyone in England is counting her to win. She’s the top female fighter in Britain but I’m going bring my best game too.”

The 115-pound Toledo said she expects Ashdown to be aggressive and put a lot of pressure on her.

“She’s a forward fighter,” said Toledo. “I like those fighters because I get to play around with my strategy more. I’m going to try and throw her off guard and throw a lot of angles and combinations at her.”

The 30-year-old Las Vegas native is coming off an impressive win at the Roseland Ballroom in New York just a month ago. Toledo defeated Emily Bearden by majority decision.

Bernabe Concepcion of Rizal, Philippines is the reigning NABF and WBC youth superbantamweight champion. He’ll be featured against Adam Carrera in the pay-per-view undercard of the Miguel Cotto vs. Antonio Margarito championship bout.

The 20-year-old Concepcion holds a 25-1-1 14 KO record. In his last match, he defeated Torrence Daniels by technical knockout in the second round in Mexico.

The knockout performance is something his trainer Freddie Roach expects to see more.

“He’s a real good puncher and I expect him to knock people out with his great power,” said Roach in a phone interview with the Asian Journal. “This opponent [Carrera] is someone we are supposed to beat but we can’t take anybody lightly. Bernabe needs to rise to the occasion.”

Roach said that among all the boxers coming out of the Philippines, Concepcion might be the best of them all.

“I really think he’s a great prospect probably the best young prospect coming out of the Philippines. I really believe that,” he said.

Roach said that he and Concepcion would leave to Las Vegas Wednesday night or Thursday morning. (


Filed under FilAm News, News

2 responses to “Three Pinoy Fighters to Showcase Skills in Vegas

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  2. Fil-Am Female Professional Champion Muay Thai Fighter Christine Toledo Brings Home Victory From China

    November 19, 2008 – Las Vegas, NV – Local Las Vegas Female Professional Champion Muay Thai Fighter Christine Toledo arrived back to the United States with a trophy in hand from earning a victory this past weekend in Zhengzhou, China on November 15, 2008 in a K-1 rules bout against top Chinese female fighter.

    Toledo entered the ring with a record of 13 wins and 2 losses and her Chinese opponent came into the fight with a record of 18 wins and 3 losses. The two were fairly matched by record and experience level before battling each other in a bout scheduled for three rounds. Toledo and her Chinese opponent were contracted at 52 kg (114.4 lbs).

    Five Americans were selected to represent the U.S. fighting team. Toledo was the only female fighter of the team. China selected an elite group of fighters to compete with the Americans, each of which had over 20 fights. The U.S. team was up for a major test of their skills.

    In the bout between Toledo and her Chinese opponent, Toledo had placed a devastating knee to her opponent’s midsection in the first few seconds in round one which resulted in a knock down and as the referee counted, the audience did not expect her to continue, but at the last second of the eight-count, she stood up with determination to finish the fight. The Chinese fighter looked to be hurt through the remaining minutes of the round. After getting back up it seemed the Chinese fighter’s goal was to stay at bay from Toledo and to go the distance until the end of the bout by circling the ring, moving backwards and escaping from Toledo’s clinch and knee techniques. Toledo was the aggressor throughout the fight. The Chinese fighter used countering technique and attempted several times to land powerful side kicks, but Toledo’s footwork, timing, and countering skills showed she was the better fighter that night.

    “My opponent was very tough, strong and fast. I was a little frustrated with her style as she was “slippery” so to speak – I mean every time I came in, she was out. And she delivered a few fast kicks without me knowing they were coming. But it was expected that she would make me work to make this fight mine. I trained for her appropriately and the strategy and technique I worked on with my trainer was effective”, said Christine Toledo.

    Toledo adds, “Even though I won this fight, I feel I could have done so much more. It was a different fight for me in which the rules I’m not used to. I prefer full Muay Thai rules, but I wanted to take on the challenge regardless and experience a great opportunity to fight on Chinese turf”.

    Toledo won the bout by unanimous decision and improved her record to 14 wins and 2 losses. According to the event promoter and staff, Toledo made history by being the first female from a foreign country to win over a Chinese female from their league. They were pleased with her performance and have already invited her back for future events.

    Anthony Badua, Muay Thai trainer, commented, “They put Christine up against one of the best on their team. This is a big victory and it’s something to be proud of. Christine represented the U.S. with style and grace. She was very classy and showed great sportsmanship and respect which the Chinese audience admired about her”.

    The American team walked away with two wins and three losses. Toledo was one of the two to come home with a victory.

    Melanie Antonio
    Public Relations Manager

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