Fireworks as the Legend Continues
June 24, 2010 - Hong Kong’s second professional mixed martial arts event, Legend II at HITEC’s Star Hall, began with fireworks and ended with the 1,500-strong crowd roaring their approval as Australian-Chinese hero Adrian ‘The Hunter’ Pang (32) triumphed over Korea’s Yu Woo Sung (28) to take his first MMA victory in Hong Kong.
Pang, who had drawn on his Hong Kong debut at Legend I in January, could smell victory from the off, despite MMA specialist Yu having been unbeaten for four years.
The match went the full three rounds, but victory was Pang’s by unanimous judges’ decision and to the approval of his fans.
Pang dominated the opening round, but the battle was intense, and the pair were twice pulled off the ropes by the referee after locking horns in the second round. The third round saw both Pang and Yu once again moved back to the centre of the ring, but in a spectacular final few seconds, the Australian proved his reputation for being unstoppable is more than justified with a final burst of hard-hitting moves.
The evening got underway with a short-but-explosive encounter between Takuma Wakabayashi (24) and Wang Zhen (20) of China. The Japanese, who specialises in karate, boxing and Brazilian Jiujitsu, triumphed after two minutes, 50 seconds into the first round when his Chinese opponent tapped out.
It was an emotional win for professional MMA athlete Tony Rossini (22) of Australia, who forced a tap-out from China’s Zhang Lipeng, two minutes and 56 seconds into their opening round.
Next up was a ferocious encounter between Kevin Belingon (22) of the Philippines and Jo Nam Jin (19) of Korea. The pair were well matched, with the Filipino determined to maintain his perfect score card of wins, and the Korean holding his own against the onslaught. The encounter went the full three rounds, with judges unanimously awarding the win to Belingon.
Boxing and wrestling specialist Pat Crawley (28) of New Zealand made a deceptively calm entrance for his middleweight bout with China’s Li Jingliang (22). The Kiwi powerhouse and the agile Li, went the full three rounds. Crawley dominated the opening round with some intelligent moves, but Li held his own and showered his opponent with a flurry of fast punches in the second round. In the closing minutes, Crawley pulled Li down and appeared to have the advantage, but the Chinese Sanda, wrestling and Brazilian Jiujitsu specialist fought back. The judges awarded the win to Crawley.
The encounter between welterweight pair Daniel Digby (27) of New Zealand and Zhang Tiequan of China lasted just 30 seconds, after the Kiwi conceded the match with a tap-out following a neck-lock. Digby was crestfallen, and later admitted to have underestimated the opposition.
Kwon A Sol (23) of Korea beat Rob Hill (25) of Australia in a thrilling, three-round bout which was the pair chose their moves carefully, and contained an electrifying mixture of fast punches and intense tests of strength. When the pair did come together, the encounters became increasingly intense, with Kwon getting Hill on the ropes twice in the second round, before he took a low blow. He came back in the final round, pinning the Australian to the mat. The referee broke up the pair, but Hill looked to be tiring in the final few seconds before the bell.
The evening took an even more dramatic turn, when Hong Kong’s own Kenny Yeung (28) took to the ring with Justin Lee (25) of Taipei. An aggressive Lee opened with a perfectly-placed right hook which stunned the home favourite. Yeung was sent to the canvas, but came back only to face a barrage of punches as Lee took full advantage before the referee stopped the match. Lee was awarded the win on a technical knockout after just 45 seconds of competition.
Said Yeung: “I didn’t expect that! It caught me by complete surprise. I’m alright, I’m not hurt. I’m a bit disappointed, but that’s the name of the game. I wouldn’t mind a rematch – it depends on how the organisers can arrange it. I think I can do better.
Korea’s Bae Myung Ho (23) took a well-deserved win over Australian Matt Cain (30) after three rounds. Bae and Cain both competed in Legend I in January, but had never met in the ring until today. Bae appeared to have the upper hand from the off, and at one stage physically lifted Cain before slamming him down onto the canvas. The Korean won by a unanimous judges decision.
Hong Kong can look forward to the return of professional MMA this Autumn with Legend III on September 24 at Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.
For further information please visit www.legendfc.com.