Lito Adiwang to Hiroba Minowa: You Cant Escape From Me
Team Lakay strawweight star Lito Adiwang has a tough test ahead of him when he meets Hexigetu at ONE: REVOLUTION on Friday, September 24, live at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
But though he says he’s not looking past his dangerous Chinese opponent, Adiwang also has a message he wants to deliver to former adversary, Hiroba Minowa.
Adiwang and Hiroba battled to a close split decision in October of 2020, with the final verdict swinging in the Japanese fighter’s favor.
“Thunder Kid” says a rematch with the #4-ranked strawweight contender is still a fight he very much wants, and is determined to get Hiroba back in the Circle after he takes care of business against Hexigetu.
“That’s definitely one win I want back. I still think I did enough to win that fight. But I guess that's why you don’t leave the decision at the hands of the judges,” Adiwang told ONE Championship.
“Even after that fight, I was already clamoring for an immediate rematch. I wanted it. I wanted to clear all doubts. A lot of fans thought I won the fight as well. But on his side, he threw out a lot of excuses. He said I needed to prove myself and whatnot. I wanted to settle that issue right then, but I guess he didn’t want another piece of me.”
In their controversial strawweight contest, Adiwang, then ranked fifth in the division, caught Hiroba in a deep submission attempt early in the first round. The Japanese fighter appeared to have tapped, but the referee missed the call and the fight continued. Hiroba battled back in the final two rounds, enough to earn the split nod.
Following the bout, there was tremendous clamor for a rematch to settle the score. However, it appeared Hiroba was fully intent to move on from the Adiwang saga.
The Filipino fighter says not so fast.
“I’ll climb my way back through the rankings and keep on winning. He can avoid me now, but once I’m in range, he will have nowhere to go. He can’t run forever,” Adiwang said.
“I will claw my way back to the top five, and he will have nowhere to run. He can’t escape from me.”
But before Adiwang can even think of a Hiroba rematch, he has to get past Hexigetu, who poses a legitimate threat. The Filipino strawweight is confident he will pass his next test with flying colors.
“I’ve had enough preparation for this fight. I’m in great physical condition. I feel strong and ready. This is going to be one of my best performances yet. I can’t wait to step inside the Circle and do what I love to do,” Adiwang said.
“[Hexigetu] has my respect. I don’t think this is a step down for me. I respect every athlete I step into the cage with, whether you’re ranked or not. I know [he] will do everything in his power to beat me. I’ll be doing the same. In my mind, whoever finishes the fight first, wins. That’s my mindset. Let’s see what kind of mindset he comes into this fight with.”
ONE: REVOLUTION happens live on Friday, September 24 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium and features three world title bouts.
Also on the card, Adiwang’s Team Lakay teammate, reigning ONE Strawweight World Champion Joshua “The Passion” Pacio is set to defend his belt against former titleholder Yosuke Saruta in a highly anticipated trilogy match.