April Osenio may be on the first losing streak of her young professional career, but the Team Lakay atomweight heroine believes that she can turn her luck around inside the ONE Championship cage.
Hoping to re-insert her name into the winner’s column, Osenio takes on a breakout martial arts superstar in undefeated compatriot Jomary “The Zamboanganian Fighter” Torres on Friday, 26 January.
Both talented martial arts is set to square off against each other on the undercard of ONE: GLOBAL SUPERHEROES, which takes place at the 20,000-seater SM Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines.
The 23-year-old Baguio City native knows of the tough challenge that lies ahead of her, but she promises to give fans her best effort and turn this into a stand-up war with Torres.
“I would say I have not changed a lot. I have just been working on improving my skills,” Osenio shared. “My style is still the same. I focus on my Wushu and really want to test my opponent’s striking abilities. I am excited to show everyone how much better I am this time around.”
Osenio is coming off a two-bout losing skid, yielding to former atomweight world title contender Jenny Huang in December 2016 via second-round submission before being thwarted by current ONE Women’s Strawweight World Champion “The Panda” Xiong Jing Nan in December 2017.
With the objective to place herself back on the winning track, Osenio chose not to wallow over her first-round stoppage loss to Xiong over a month ago as she jumps right back into action by facing her countryman Torres.
“I’m very excited to be called up to compete again, especially in front of a hometown crowd. Being called up to compete on another blockbuster card shows that ONE Championship believes in me and the skills that I have,” she stated.
“It’s an honor to share the cage with a brilliant and outstanding martial artist like Jomary Torres on Friday. I am ready to give the fans an exciting match,” said Osenio, who is brimming with pride and excitement as she desires to quickly bounce back from her recent string of setbacks.
There are exactly 48 days between her last ONE Championship outing and the upcoming three-round atomweight encounter with Torres, but Osenio assured that she has fully recovered and is ready to give it her all inside the cage.
“I had enough time to recover from my last trip to the cage. I was back in training camp as soon as I got the call. For me, every time is training time. I train three times a day. It’s my responsibility, and it keeps me prepared for whatever comes my way,” she explained.
Despite her distinct advantage in experience, Osenio admitted that she is not taking her opponent lightly as Torres is having an incredible journey in ONE Championship.
Torres shocked the world in August 2017 when the little-known atomweight from the Philippines made her promotional debut against rising Thai martial arts star Rika “Tinydoll” Ishige at ONE: KINGS & CONQUERORS in Macao, China.
While the Thai standout has emerged as one of the most popular talents in Asia’s martial arts scene, Torres stole her thunder on that fateful night when she submitted Ishige in the second round of their exhilarating contest.
Three months after she forced Ishige to wave the white flag in her maiden ONE Championship appearance, Tores out-grappled Indonesia’s Nita Dea en route to a unanimous decision victory at ONE: HERO’S DREAM in Yangon, Myanmar.
“She is having an incredible run as a competitor in this promotion. Jomary Torres is very strong and skillful. This makes my preparation for this next match crucial because I want to show the world that I can hang with the best,” Osenio pointed out.
Setting up camp deep in the high altitudes of the Philippines’ mountainous region, Osenio hones her craft training with her esteemed stablemates at Team Lakay.
Most of her training partners are already well-established in their careers, and Osenio bared that she certainly learns a lot from them.
“Out of all my teammates, I spend the most time training with Gina [Iniong], Joshua [Pacio], Danny [Kingad], and Geje [Eustaquio],” she stressed. “It is so important that we help each other improve because we can a lot from our experiences, especially championship bout experience.”
When Osenio steps back into the cage at ONE: GLOBAL SUPERHEROES on Friday, her crosshairs are not only focused on having her hand raised in triumph, but also to catapult her position higher up the divisional ladder.
“This next bout is so important because my opponent is one of our country’s best martial artists, and a win will really speak volumes of where I am at as a professional. This is one of the toughest training camps I have ever had so far. I am ready to showcase the results on Friday,” she declared.