BUOYED by the success of its inaugural international mixed martial arts event in San Francisco, California last January, the Universal Reality Combat Championship (URCC) is set to conquer new grounds beginning next month.
Next stop: Beijing, China.
URCC president Alvin Aguilar said eight of URCC’s world-class fighters will represent the country in the URCC XXX: Bakbakan na in China” at the Beijing Sport University Stadium in Beijing, China on July 8.
Team Philippines will be headed by two-division URCC middleweight and light heavyweight champion Chris Hofmann of DEFTAC and URCC women’s world flyweight champion Geli Bulaong of Subsports Philippines.
They will be joined by former lightweight contender Isaiah ‘The Messiah’ Ordiz of Boss MMA, rising star bantamweight Rodian ‘The Redeemer’ Menchavez of Catalan Fighting System, Rex ‘Knockout King’ de Lara of Mumma Fight Factory, knockout artist Jojo ‘El Matador’ Orao of Elorde Tandang Sora, new prospect Paolo Castillo of Abao Combat Club and newly-signed bantamweight champion Ralf Francisco.
“This is our chance to shine and there’s no stopping the URCC and its world-class fighters in showing the world what we can do,” said Aguilar, also the president of the Wrestling Association of the Philippines (WAP).
Aguilar said no less than President Duterte has approved the URCC XXX in China through the China-Philippines Martial Arts Development Association and the Cross Straights Sports Development Bureau.
“After 15 years in the fight business, the future shines even brighter now as URCC and the China-Philippines Martial Arts Development Association (CPMAADA) is now supported by President Duterte and officially endorsed by the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) and Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) Martial Arts Council.
“The establishment of CPMAADA can now fulfill its mission and vision which is to give athletes and martial artists the exposure they need in training and competition to become better and more well-rounded athletes.”
Aguilar also said the China event will be a fitting follow-up to URCC 29: Conquest held at the Kezar Pavillion in San Francisco, California last Jan. 7.
The URCC 29L Conquest marked the beginning of its expansion worldwide, making the URCC the first Asian MMA promotion to expand operations in the USA.
“Now, we will go to Beijing to prove how good the Filipino fighters are against China’s best fighters,” added Aguilar.
Aguilar also announced:
-- The renewal of partnership between the URCC and San Miguel Corp. thru Red Horse brand.
-- The entry of Araneta Coliseum as the official venue of all URCC events.
-- The possibility of a rematch between of last year’s controversial fight between actor Baron Geisler and model Kiko Matos, which ended in a draw.
-- The full support of the Games and Amusement Board (GAB), headed by chairman Baham Mitra, in all URCC competition.
--Signing of agreement with former San Juan Vice Mayor Francis Zamora in launching grassroots program for mixed martial arts, jiu-jitsu and wrestling,” said Aguilar.
“We’re proud to announce that SMC, particularly the Red Horse brand renewed its partnership with us. The Araneta Coliseum was also finalized as the official venue partner for all URCC fight card for 2017,” said Aguilar
Two title fights are now in the official MMA calendar -- URCC 31: Vendetta in August and URCC 33 in November.
Mitra, on the other hand, said GAB will extend its full support to URCC program through strict implementation of rules and regulation during fight night to ensure safety and well being of the fighters.