The venue may have changed, but the result stayed the same. For the second time in as many fights, ONE FC featherweight champion Koji Oishi devastated former titleholder Honorio Banario, knocking out the young Filipino was a dazzling pair of straight rights midway through the third round to defend his belt at ONE FC 13, which took place Friday night at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines.
Oishi was a 3-to-1 underdog when the pair first met at ONE FC 9, but this time the Japanese veteran proved that his come from behind title-winning performance was no fluke. Things started slowly, forcing referee Yuji Shimada to warn both fighters for inaction minutes into the second frame. Though from there Oishi took over, repeatedly staggering Banario with a steady diet of straight right hands.
Banario (8-3) did his best to stay alive, however it would be all for naught as Oishi (25-9-10) double loaded up on his right hand once more early in the third round, blasting Banario off his feet and onto the canvas. Three extra shots finished things off, with the stoppage officially coming at 1:43 of the third round.
"This [fight] was very different (than the first)," Oishi said afterward through a translator. "I just tried to find one opportunity to knock him out or finish him."
In the night's co-main event, Filipino bantamweight prospect Kevin Belingon (12-3) obliterated David Aranda (9-1), knocking the lights out of the previously undefeated Spaniard with a monstrous left hook midway through the opening frame.
After peppering him throughout the first round, Belingon sent Aranda reeling with a wild flurry, then caught him right on the button as he grasped for a desperation clinch, rendering the 37-year-old immediately unconscious and sending him crashing face first to the canvas. The highlight reel finish came just 2:53 into the bout.
"I was just looking for the opportunity to knock him out. I'm glad the opportunity came," a grinning Belingon said. "I don't know yet (what's next), it depends on ONE FC, if they give me another shot, or a title shot maybe."
Elsewhere on the card, popular Filipino lightweight Eduard Folayang (13-4) showcased improved wrestling to dominate Vincent Latoel (14-13-2) en route to a unanimous decision victory. Folayang secured takedowns in each of the three rounds, and nearly earned a stoppage during a vicious second-round sequence in which he rained down a hail of unanswered punches and short elbows from side control.
"I learned a lesson from my last fight," Folayang said. "I lost by takedowns, and I really worked hard on that. I worked on my wrestling skills so that I could be able to perform well in this fight."
Decorated South African kickboxer Vuyisile Colossa (7-4) handily dispatched former UFC fighter Caros Fodor (8-4), peppering the American with outside striking and brutalizing him from inside the clinch, highlighted by a third-round flurry of standing elbows, to take a decision on the judges' scorecards.
After entering the cage overcome by emotion, Colossa dedicated his win to late South African president Nelson Mandela, before calling out ONE FC lightweight champion Shinya Aoki.
"The next fight should be ‘The Cheetah' versus Aoki," Colossa declared. "I can take him at 67 (kilograms), I can take him at 70. It's up to him what he wants. Aoki! Come defend your title right here."
Check out complete ONE FC 13 results here.