‘The Crank’ battles COVID-19


Frank “The Crank” Camacho has been pulled out from the fight card in the UFC Fight Night 177 after testing positive for COVID-19. (Contributed Photo)

The warrior in MMA fighter Frank “The Crank” Camacho will be tested in the coming weeks, as he faces a different battle this time—against the COVID-19 virus.

Camacho confirmed he tested positive for the coronavirus after arriving in Las Vegas last Wednesday (Saipan time) for his Sept. 12 bout against Brok “Chata Tuska” Weaver in the UFC Fight Night 177.

“I was pulled out from the fight. I tested positive but no real heavy symptoms. Little sore throat, and little runny nose. I’m sure it’s because I’m always hydrating with water, taking my vitamins, eating healthy food, getting good rest, and most importantly having a positive outlook on everything,” said Camacho.

The Marianas fighter, who tested negative when he left Guam late last month and a week before in Irvine, California while in a training camp with Team Oyama, got tested twice at the hotel where Ultimate Fighting Championship has its fighters billeted and received the bad news yesterday morning, leaving UFC officials with no choice but to call off Camacho’s duel against Weaver.

“It’s a bummer. At first I thought it was the Vegas heat and dry plus the fires in California that had me having a little sore throat, but it’s COVID. I am doing everything to combat this,” said Camacho, who thanked people back in Guam and on Saipan for sending their thoughts and prayers and encouraged them to be vigilant as well as we all battle the virus.

Frank “The Crank” Camacho trains at Team Oyama in Irvine, California late last month for his Sept. 12 bout against Brok “Chata Tuska” Weaver in the UFC Fight Night 177. (Contributed Photo)

“I urge everyone back home to have their bodies in the best possible condition to fight this virus,” Camacho said.

The 31-year-old athlete is scheduled to return to California where he will be isolated as he works on his recovery. The rest of Team Oyama, cornermen and other fighters, will remain in Las Vegas, as they all tested negative.

“The UFC said after 10 days and I get negative tests, they’ll rebook me ASAP. Now, I have an opportunity to get two wins. One versus COVID and the other against a new UFC opponent,” Camacho said.

The match against Weaver would have been Camacho’s last in his second contract with UFC and he is looking at bouncing back from an early loss to Justin Jaynes in the UFC Fight Night 173, also in Las Vegas, last June. Jaynes was a last-minute replacement for Camacho’s original foe, Matt Frevola, who, incidentally, was pulled out from fight card after his cornerman tested positive for COVID-19. Frevola will return to the octagon cage in the same event where Camacho was supposed to compete, as the former will face Roosevelt Roberts, who defeated Weaver in their May bout this year.

“It’s difficult to be in this situation, especially I am away from home and have been working so hard to prepare for this fight, but I have to keep that positive mindset and consider this as another curveball thrown at me,” Camacho said.

“I have another fight that just came up. It’s against COVID. Round 1, let’s go!”

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.
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