With his win over Bokang Masunyane at ONE 156 last weekend Jarred Brooks secured a strawweight title shot. His next fight will be against reigning champion Joshua Pacio and the American hopes the matchup happens sooner rather than later,

“I can’t release the date unfortunately, but it’s going to be sooner rather than later. If Joshua takes it. Joshua, you better take it.”

It sounds like Brooks has accepted a fight and is just waiting for Pacio to put pen to paper. The champion has only fought once in the last year while the challenger has been competing nearly every other month,

“As you can see, I fought three times in the past six months, it’s going to be four here really soon. My plan is to fight five times by the end of the year, and I’m just going to keep on going through this cycle. Man, that’s what I love,” Brooks declared.

Easier fight

Brooks has already beaten Pacio’s teammate Lito Adiwang. He submitted him in the second round and sees a fight with the champion as being ‘a little bit easier’,

“I see (the fight with Pacio going) like Lito Adiwang, just maybe a little bit easier. Lito is more explosive, but I’d say Joshua is a little bit more technical savvy and has more patience, so we’ll see how that fight goes. But I think it would be similar. I’d choke him out in the first or second round. Hopefully, it’ll be in the next two months so I can get a world title and get the big belt.”

Brooks is so confident of beating Pacio that he has already started thinking about what happens next. The American says he is impressed by strawweight contenders Gustavo Balart and Danial Williams who both made it back to back wins at ONE 156,

“After that, I can go against people like Gustavo Balart, he looked pretty good today, and so did ‘Mini T’ (Danial Williams). I can’t deny them what they want but I’d like to go up to flyweight and fight Adriano Moraes.”

No animosity

There was no animosity whatsoever between Brooks and Masunyane. The UFC veteran had his opponents back for nearly four minutes and admits he had to be patient,

“I was pleased with my patience, having his back and staying there as long as I did. I wanted to wait until my arms got a little more slippery so I could get under his neck and finish it in a fashionable way.”

Brooks took no pleasure in seeing Masunyane lose and it sounds like he has a lot of respect for the South African,

“Hats off to Bokang. It sucks to beat somebody like that because he’s such a good dude and has such a good soul and heart. So, it kinda hurts me to beat somebody that really wanted it like I do.”

Experienced strawweight

Brooks is one of the most experienced strawweights on the ONE Championship roster. He had his first amateur fight in 2010 and signed for the UFC seven years later. But he says he was not able to focus full time on his MMA career until relatively recently,

“Personally, I feel like I have a lot to work on and I want to pursue getting better as well. I (was) only training twice a week, working out four days a week. Now, I have the opportunity to train almost every day, and you guys are going to see that against Joshua Pacio.”

He hasn’t made himself popular in the Philippines with all the trash talk aimed at Pacio and Team Lakay. But one thing Brooks definitely doesn’t lack is confidence

He realizes that no everyone likes him but the 28 year old says no-one can deny his talent,

“I talk a lot, so I’m always going to have my haters, but the people that know the sport and know me definitely have that respect for me. There’s nobody in the world that can beat me. I believe that to the core of my heart, and that’s not trash talk.”