MANILA, Philippines — From the looks of things, Lito Adiwang seemed to have it in the bag when he faced Namiki Kawahara in ONE: Unbreakable at Singapore Indoor Stadium.
Adiwang was loose and confident in his second round knockout of the Japanese champion, but he certainly just made it look easy considering the things he had to go through heading into the bout.
The Team Lakay rising star dealt with a tragedy when his mother passed away on Dec. 30 just a little over a month after he suffered his first loss in eight fights.
Adiwang admitted that he struggled to get back to the gym after his defeat to Hiroba Minowa and he had to welcome the New Year without his mother for the first time in his life.
“This was the toughest camp I’ve faced and the preparation leading to this fight was very tough for me emotionally because after a loss it’s quite hard to get back and suddenly I still cannot get my momentum to get to the gym,” said Adiwang.
“My spirit is quite low and then suddenly the tragedy happened when my mom passed away and that hurts me so much.”
Looking to bounce back and get his mind right once more, Adiwang put on a patient and masterful performance against Namiki, knocking him out in the second round with a perfect left cross to the jaw.
The win not only got Adiwang back on track but also allowed him to return to his old self.
“Taking this fight for me is testing myself and see where my level is,” said Adiwang. “I’m not nervous against my opponent but I was nervous if I can perform well.”
“I had this demon in me but I was hoping that I can perform well. I tried to beat and overcome my fear so thank God it all went well.”
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