Eddiva, Muñoz vow to crush foes in UFC Manila

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Filipino mixed martial arts (MMA) fighters Mark Eddiva and Mark “The Filipino Wrecking Machine” Muñoz promised their compatriots that they would beat their respective foes in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Fight Night in Manila at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City on Saturday.

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Eddiva, 29, who has a 6-1 win-loss record, said that he’s fully committed in beating American Levan “The Hornet” Makashvili in their featherweight bout.

“I have nothing in my mind right now but how to destroy him,” Eddiva, a former sanshou [wushu contact fighting]national athlete, told The Manila Times in an interview. “One hundred percent I’m ready physically and mentally.”

Eddiva said that he has no problem with Makashvili (6-1) replacing his original opponent Alex White.

“I was surprised but I’m prepared against anyone,” added Eddiva, who is known for his striking prowess and stand-up fighting style. “My opponent is a striker too that’s why it will be a great fight, but if I can take him down or submit that will be also fine.”

Makashvili, known for his great kickboxing skills but lack of ground game, said that he would collide head-on against Eddiva. “If he’s going to box, we’ll box. I’m expecting a tough fight with him and I hope he’s ready,” said the 26-year-old fighter.

Middleweight Muñoz, 37, who earlier announced that he would fight a farewell bout on Saturday will battle 6-foot-6 Englishman Luke Barnatt. Muñoz, who only stands six feet, said that he is not intimidated by Barnatt’s size.

“Height doesn’t matter. Let’s give the crowd a good fight,” said Muñoz, who holds a 13-6 win-loss record. “He’s a very tough guy who moves forward and uses his length to his advantage, but I’m going to surprise him.”

Barnatt, 27, an all-around fighter who has three knockouts and three submissions in his ten fights said that the crowd cheering for Muñoz would not bother him.

“I’m pumped up the more they boo me,” said Barnatt. “Let’s just see on the fight.”

The other featured bouts are Filipino Roldan Sangcha-an (4-1) vs Jon Delos Reyes (7-4), Gegard Mousasi (36-5-2) vs Costas Philippou (13-4), and Philip Nover (10-5-1) vs Yui Chul Nam (18-4-1).

Frankie “The Answer” Edgar (18-4-1) and Urijah “The California Kid” Faber (32-7) will fight in the main event.

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