Munoz announces farewell fight at UFC Manila card

Fil-Am UFC star Mark Munoz is being interviewed by reporters after a press conference at Solaire Casino Grand Ballroom in Pasay City on Tuesday. gALDER ALMO

MANILA, Philippines Mark Munoz stole the limelight from main card fighters Frankie Edgar and Urijah Faber by announcing that his homecoming fight would be his last.

UFC Asia Executive Vice President Ken Berger officially announced the inclusion of Munoz in the full stacked UFC Fight Night Manila against rising star Luke “The Bigslow” Barnatt.

It’s going to be a dream come true for Munoz, who is coming off a tough first round knockout loss to Roan Carneiro at UFC 184.

“I’ve waited for this for so long. It’s a dream come true for me,” Munoz told reporters Tuesday after the press conference at Solaire Casino Grand Ballroom in Pasay City.

Munoz though waxed sentimental as he said it’s also going to be his last fight.

“My kids are growing up and my boy has decided to take up wrestling. I was surprised by his decision but I’m happy and I want to be there for him,” Munoz said.

Munoz is excited to have his farewell fight in front of his countrymen. His parents, who hail from Pasay City and Sta. Ana, Manila will be returning home after more than three decades to be on hand at this important fight of his life.

The 37-year-old Munoz has acknowledged that he is already at the tail-end of his MMA career after losing his last three fights. But the proud Filipino fighter wants to go out with a bang.

“This fight is very important for me. My career had its ups and downs. It’s like a storm has hit me and like all Filipinos, I want to show the resiliency that we’re known for,” Munoz said.

Munoz wants to concentrate on coaching and vows to have a more proactive role in helping MMA grow in the Philippines after his fighting days are over.

“I promise to be back and help grow MMA here. I would like the Philippines to be known not only on boxing but also MMA. I feel like we’re a perfect match. Filipinos are already known for striking and I’ve been teaching wrestling my whole career,” Munoz said.

The Filipino Wrecking Machine will be looking for an impressive win at home for a fitting end to his pro career that started in 2007. He has compiled a record of 13 wins (six via knockout, six via decision and one via submission) against six losses.