Rising ONE Super Series star Jackie Buntan, who is representing the United States and the Philippines, is especially grateful for all the support she is receiving from Filipinos, despite having yet to visit Manila where her siblings were born.
“Being a Filipino-American born and raised in the U.S., and having never even visited the country yet, it’s insane to have this much coverage coming from the Philippines. My whole family is originally from the Philippines. I was the only one to be born in the U.S. I’m very proud of my heritage. I’m thankful for all the support,” Buntan said.
Buntan’s whole family migrated to the U.S. before she was born. But despite being born an American, the 23-year-old says she was raised with Filipino values, in a predominantly Filipino household.
After her ONE Super Series debut in February, in an impressive victory over the highly regarded Wondergirl Fairtex of Thailand, Buntan returned home to California where her parents proudly welcomed their daughter.
“When I got home from Singapore, my parents expressed how proud and excited they were for me. The last time they saw me compete was in 2019, as an amateur, so I definitely had a huge amount of time for growth as an athlete from then to now,” Buntan said.
“My family said it was special for them to witness my professional debut on such a grand stage like ONE Championship. Lots of doubt came on my end when I was younger and having a debut like that really solidified the fact that I can take this chapter in my life seriously. My parents are nothing but proud,” Buntan added.
Now, with the chance to make her family and country proud once again, Buntan is looking for another spectacular performance.
“I’d like to thank all my fans and supporters in the Philippines for believing in me. Knowing I have an entire nation behind me only motivates me to push myself hard to achieve my goals and dreams,” said the rising star, who trains with Boxing Works. – Harley F. Palangchao