Jhanlo Sangiao is finally making his ONE Championship debut during the promotion's last fight card of the year. He will also be carrying his father's ring name, 'The Machine', for the first time while going up against Paul Lumihi in ONE NextGen III.
Prior to Jhanlo's upcoming bout in ONE Championship, he had only fought in the professional ranks. It was against Danilo Dangalan at Team Lakay Championship 15 way back in 2018 when he was just 15 years old.
The fight ended in a first-round knockout, with the younger Sangiao coming out on top. During that match, he was still carrying the ring name 'The Little Machine'.
His father, Mark Sangiao, did not want to hand over his ring name until his son reached the right age. Going into his first bout in ONE Championship, Team Lakay's head coach felt that this was the perfect time to confer Jhanlo with the ring name.
"I gave him the name because he was just little back then. Now that he is big, he can already have the name," said Coach Mark Sangiao during an online media press conference. "That name was given to me before when I was an athlete because when I start, I won’t stop until there is a clear winner. They should expect that hopefully, the fruit is better than the predecessor."
Balancing being a father and a coach ahead of Jhanlo Sangiao's debut in ONE Championship
Team Lakay has produced titleholders in ONE Championship, and a lot of the credit goes to Coach Mark Sangiao. One of the keys to Team Lakay's success is the culture that Sangiao built by treating each other as family, and he sees his fighters as his kin.
Sangiao admits that this fight will feel different since he will be coaching his actual son for the first time.
"This is the first time I’m coaching a son. Though our athletes, we already consider as sons and daughters, but it is different when you are blood-related. We’ll see. But for me, I will treat him like any other athlete. I would only know by then the experience of coaching your son by the sidelines."
The Team Lakay founder believes that Jhanlo is ready to compete on the bigger stage, and he just needs to help him adjust to the pressure heading to ONE: NextGen III.