“This. Is. MANILA!” The URCC Tribal Brawl Championships: A Massive Fight Card of the Best Amateur MMA Fighters in the Philippines


When in Manila and looking for blood, the Universal Reality Combat Championship made sure there was a lot of it in the 10-fight inaugural Tribal Brawl held at SM North Edsa Sky Dome. Even with protective head gears on, fighters were bleeding from their orifices in almost all bouts. Only two fights went the distance, but even those had the audience shouting “DAAAAMN!” throughout the matches!


IMG 2627 


For starters, these girls made sure that the predominantly male crowd were entertained throughout the night with their steamy dance numbers and sultry romps as ring girls.


 IMG 2626IMG 2629


Sandwich performed four songs during the first part of the night, including “Sugod” and “Procrastinator”.


 IMG 2635

IMG 2636  IMG 2634


The first half of the fight card was the battle for third across the 110 to 159-pound divisions. (Disclaimer: Most of the shots are from the ground because attempting to capture the stand-up action with my point-and-shoot was like chasing hares with a slingshot.)


JR Rulloda (b) of Deftac won a unanimous decision victory over Froilan Chopchopen (r) through effective control on the ground with triangle choke and arm bar attempts from the bottom during the first round, and threatening a rear-naked choke in the second.





Flyweights Arnil Perez (b) and Nonoy Francisco (r) had their moments in a devil-may-care exchange of fists. Then out of nowhere Francisco unloaded a wicked hook which dropped Perez to the mat. Perez was already out before he hit the mat, but the Ju-Muay fighter followed up with a hammer fist on his downed opponent for added insurance. A knockout victory at 3:10 of the first round for “The Finisher”!


In the Bantamweight division, Dumaguete’s Eman Davis (b) dominated Mike Castro (r) for a Round 2 TKO victory. Castro took Davis down several times, but Davis always reversed their position as soon as they hit the ground. Round 1 ended with the referee saving Castro from a rear naked choke. Round 2 was basically the same story with a reversal from Davis leading to full mount. The referee stopped the contest after Castro gave his back and Davis was pounding away.




Featherweight Alvin Solinap (r) outclassed Rafael Elib (b) with crisp kicks and effective striking. Solinap caught an Elib leg kick and converted it to a successful single leg takedown. From there Alvin worked towards a full mount and continued his onslaught until Elib gave his back for a rear naked choke victory at 2:30 of Round 1 for the long and dangerous Deftac fighter.




The last fight in the battle for third saw Deftac’s Arvin Chan (r) make quick work of Jules Celiz (b) as he won via a guillotine choke in 41 seconds of Round 1!




The stakes were higher for the fighters in the second half of fight night. Not only were the winners crowned Tribal Brawl champions, they automatically received a contract with the URCC as well!




In the pinweight championships, Deftac Dumaguete’s Jun Jun Sinco (b) edged Ranel Tangguiyac (r) in the first round with pinpoint strikes and body-breaking kicks. Come the second round, Tangguiyac went for Plan B as he clinched and brought the fight to the ground, turning the tide and winning via rear naked choke at 2:57 of Round 2.





Fred Lim Jr. (b) of Deftac Dumaguete dominated Ric Myler Empil (r) in a Round 1 submission victory via triangle choke. “The Spiderman” quickly got into full mount, pounding on the resisting Baguio native. Empil was able to reverse the position, but only to get caught in a nasty triangle choke,  tapping out in the 3:29 mark.


Image00010IMG 2679 7


Click here to see URCC Tribal Brawl Fred Lim Jr. Triangle Choke video.


Tribal Submission/Baguio Top Team got their second win of the night care of Kevin Yongaan’s (r) unanimous decision victory over Romnick Malan (b). Yongaan’s ground-and-pound was the difference maker as he secured the top position to land several telling blows. Bacolod’s Malan attempted several submissions and had his own GNP late in the second, but ultimately it was not enough to win the judges’ favor.





Perhaps the highlight of the night, Jefferson Ng (b) of Deftac Dumaguete knocked the lights out of Rommel Salazar (r) in a record 18 seconds! Jefferson’s straight right landed flush on Salazar’s left cheek, cracking the cheekbone amidst the protective head gear. The downed Salazar ate several more of Jefferson’s atomic fists before his eyes literally rolled up (I was staring at him when it happened!) and the referee stopped Jefferson from landing more. An ecstatic Jefferson celebrated while his opponent was brought to the hospital after his cheekbone was sunk.





Heavy metal band Intolerant played two songs before the final match of the night. The kids in the audience were covering their ears as the band screamed their songs’ guttural lyrics and shredded through the instrumentals!


IMG 2699


Finally, Rolly Rodavites (b) of Y-Gym Dumaguete and JR Amores (r) of Yaw-Yan Buhawi slugged it out for the Tribal Brawl lightweight championship. Amores controlled the first part of the fight, landing knees while holding Rodavites in a Muay Thai plum, then taking him down and going for a full guard. But Rodavites reversed the position and started to pound on Amores in side mount. Round 2 saw Rodavites stagger his opponent while they were exchanging. Amores’s corner wisely threw in the towel after welts became visible on his face while Rodavites continued his GNP from the top. I learned later on that the chiseled Rodavites worked hard labor in Dumaguete. Thanks to it, he is the lightweight champion via TKO!





When fight fans in Manila want to know who they should be watching for in 2012, my picks are Rolly Rodavites, Jefferson Ng, Fred Lim Jr., and Alvin Solinap. That’s just me, and I’m playing safe here. 


I would like to thank Willy Carlos and the URCC for the ringside access this fight night.


For more on the Tribal Brawl and everything else URCC, visit urccmma.com and like them on facebook.com/urccmma.ph.



“This. Is. MANILA!” The URCC Tribal Brawl Championships: Bakbakan Na!