Marianas Variety

Last updateWed, 22 Nov 2017 12am

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    Tuesday, November 21, 2017-12:24:09P.M.

     

     

     

     

     

Guam’s Martinez crowned DEEP heavyweight champ

IT wasn’t the most electrifying of fights, there were quite a few moments of extended clinching and inactivity, and his opponent even seemed disinterested in fighting at one point but what matters most is that Roque Martinez got the job done and made history in the process.

On Saturday, former Pacific Xtreme Combat heavyweight champion Martinez, of Guam, seized the DEEP “Megatonweight” championship by dethroning Jaideep Singh via unanimous decision.

A promotional banner displaying the title fight image of Jaideep Singh and Roque Martinez.  Photo credit DEEP

Megatonweight is essentially the Japanese promotion’s equivalent of the heavyweight or super heavyweight class.

The two heavyweights squared off in DEEP Cage Impact 2017, at the Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan for their three round title affair.

Prior to their clash, Singh had held the title since October of 2015 when he won it at DEEP 73 Impact.

Reputed for his extreme durability, heavy hands, deceptive athleticism and well-rounded mixed martial arts repertoire, Martinez knew he had a tall task ahead of him—both figuratively and literally.

Singh is a 6’5 professional Japanese national kick boxer of Indian descent. He towered over the Guam-born fighter and possessed a significant reach advantage as well.

Although Martinez had a considerable edge in pro MMA experience, entering their match, Singh’s combat sports resume is far more extensive. The latter is 40-10 in pro kickboxing, is the K-1 World Grand Prix 2009 in Seoul tournament champion and once fought one of the greatest fighters of all time, Fedor Emelianenko, under MMA rules.

Martinez seemed undaunted by these credentials.

In fact, outside of a few solid knees from the clinch and an occasional jab, Singh’s standup looked surprisingly sloppy and lackadaisical. He did not look nearly as crisp or as technical with his striking combinations as he did during his prime K-1 days.

Ironically, it was Martinez who got the better of the standing exchanges most of the time.

Martinez opened up the fight with a huge slam takedown in Round 1. From there, he essentially established the tone of the remainder of the contest.

Singh seemed wary and apprehensive at the thought of being taken down again, which allowed Martinez to dictate what direction the action would go.

Martinez controlled his man against the cage and constantly kept Singh on his back foot through the standing exchanges, never allowing the latter to establish a rhythm or consistent offense.

Singh’s best moments were in Round 2 when he managed to connect with some knees and straight punches. However, his momentum was short lived.

Singh spent the majority of Round 3 back pedaling and sometimes altogether avoiding Martinez completely by literally turning and walking away.

In the end, Martinez was awarded the much deserved unanimous decision victory on all of the judges’ score cards.

With the win, Martinez improved to 10-3-2; while Singh dropped to 2-3 in MMA competition.

Martinez also made history by becoming the first DEEP champion from the Marianas and the first of Chamorro descent. He joins the likes of Frank “The Crank” Camacho, Jon “Super Saiyan” Tuck and Herman “The Titan” Terrado, among other Marianas-born fighters making waves in recent international MMA headlines. Martinez, who fights out of Steel Athletics/Spike 22, is also a friend and training partner of the aforementioned fighters.

Most CNMI MMA fans recognize Martinez from his trilogy of exciting fights with Saipan’s Kelvin “The Big Hit” Fitial under the PXC banner. Each man holds one victory over the other and they share a draw across their three encounters.