Jhanlo “The Machine” Sangiao knows that he has ways to go before he can be considered as the new face of Team Lakay.
But it doesn’t mean that he can’t work his way to get to that level, one that he looks to inch closer to in his next fight against Enkh-Orgil Baatarkhuu at ONE Fight Night 13: Allazov vs. Grigorian on August 5 inside Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand.
“Nagte-training lang ako at ine-enjoy ko lang ito. Ipapakita ko kung ano yung kaya ko sa loob ng Circle. Yun lang naman yung goal ko eh,” the bantamweight rising star said.
“Kung sabihin nila na ako yung bagong face ng Team Lakay, pasalamat lang ako pero pinagtatrabahuan ko naman lahat ng ito.”
Sangiao being considered as the new torchbearer for the famed Baguio stable isn’t really that much of a surprise considering the changes that Team Lakay had to endure in the past few months.
Yet it’s also a bit of a no brainer, with the 21-year-old leading the new cavalry of Igorot warriors in The Home of Martial Arts as he has gone undefeated in his three fights including a jaw-dropping first round submission win over Matias Farinelli where he only needed 58 seconds to lock in the kneebar and force a tap at ONE Fight Night 9: Nong-O vs. Haggerty last April.
Making Sangiao more dangerous is the rejuvenated feeling he has seeing his fellow Team Lakay bet Carlos Alvarez score a second round submission victory over Sadegh Ghasemi at ONE Friday Fights 25 – further proof of the tides turning once again in favor of their camp.
“Medyo nae-excite ako kasi nanalo yung isang teammate namin, si Carlos. Naha-hype na rin ako na lumaban ulit,” he said. “Nakakatulong din na puro bago ang sparring partners ko kaya energized lahat. Mas focused kami ngayon sa gameplan.”
As for his father and Team Lakay founder Mark Sangiao, he’s just glad that Jhanlo, same with the new fighters under their stable, are steadfast in continuing to uphold the Team Lakay mantle.
“Our next generation of Team Lakay fighters are doing okay for the most part. I can see them working hard and they’re doing their training every day. That’s just how I see it. They train hard and the attendance has been solid,” he said.
The younger Sangiao may not be the bonafide leader of the pack now, but what he can assure is how this new-look Team Lakay has stayed on their path, helping each other in hopes of once again bringing the gold home.
“Sa amin naman, tulungan lang talaga ang bawat isa. Kung sino ang may kailangan ng advice, shine-share namin yung alam namin. Nandyan pa rin naman si papa na matagal na sa sport na ito at best coach para sa akin, so ako ipapakita ko lang yung kung ano ang kaya ko sa Circle,” he said before making a huge guarantee ahead of his fight.