MANILA, Philippines — Team Lakay's Lito Adiwang had some choice words for Japanese foe Hiroba Minowa after the latter expressed disinterest in a rematch after a controversial bout between the fighters last November.
"He's scared to get inside the Circle with me again," said Adiwang.
Minowa recently made comments about a potential rematch with the Filipino fighter, after their meeting ended in controversial fashion in a split decision win in favor of the Japanese.
He had stated that he was "not interested" in fighting the rising strawweight contender and that he is more keen to compete against "the higher-ranked fighters and making it to the top".
Adiwang and his camp have called for an immediate rematch against Minowa after replays saw the Japanese fighter "tap out" in the first round of the fight when the Filipino had him trapped in a deep kimura arm lock.
However, both Adiwang and the referee were unable to recognize it and the bout continued with Minowa escaping by a hairline.
The 27-year-old Adiwang says that the closeness of the fight should be a sufficient reason for them to meet in the Circle again.
"He can't enjoy that victory because a lot of fans don't accept the outcome. It was a close split decision that could have gone either way, that many people thought I won," said Adiwang.
"The only way to prove total victory is a rematch," he concluded.
Adiwang had already bounced back after his loss from the Japanese fighter, with a convincing knockout win over Minowa's compatriot Namiki Kawahara last January.
While Minowa is set to fight former ONE Strawweight World Champion Alex Silva in ONE: Fists of Fury III.
Though both fighters have already moved on to different opponents, Adiwang believes that he and Minowa meeting again will be unavoidable.
"I'm sure me and him will meet each other again, as long as we both keep winning. That rematch is inevitable," he said.
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