MANILA, Philippines – Of the four Filipino boxers seeing action in Philippines vs. the World, three will be on a comeback trail as they search for boxing glory against invading opponents in Cebu on Saturday.
Rey “Boom Boom” Bautista, Jimrex “The Executioner” Jaca, and Florante “Little Pacquiao” Condes are looking for impressive victories against their foreign counterparts at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino to boost their respective campaigns for world title shots.
Bautista will exchange blows with Alejandro “Zorrito” Barrera, the cousin of Mexican boxing legend Marco Antonio Barrera, in his first full-length fight since recovering from a wrist injury.
Jaca will slug it out against former World Boxing Council (WBC) Latino super featherweight titlist Jose “Pipino” Cuevas Jr., son of the great Mexican boxer and namesake, Cuevas Sr..
Condes will take on Indonesian toughie Sofyan Effendi, reigning Pan Asia Boxing Association interim minimumweight champion.
For Bautista, fighting Barrera is a stepping stone to get himself fights against big-name boxers in the featherweight division. Among his targets are Juan Manuel Lopez, Yuriorkis Gamboa, Rafael Marquez and Chris John.
“It would be an honor for me to fight any one of them, even if I lose,” Bautista said in PhilBoxing.com (http://philboxing.com/). “But I would like to fight Juanma Lopez.”
This will be Bautista’s third fight since undergoing surgery for an injury in his left wrist.
Jaca, meanwhile, shoots for his third straight win after scoring back-to-back knock-out victories over Ramadhan Weriu of Indonesia and James Kimori of Kenya.
He credited his success to the boxing training he received from Cebu’s ALA (Antonio L. Aldeguer) Boxing Gym.
“The ALA training regimen is harder,” Jaca said. “But I feel I have improved a lot.”
Condes, the former International Boxing Federation (IBF) minimumweight champion, will be fighting for the first time since his unanimous decision loss to South African Nkosinathi Joyi in June 2009.
His fight against Effendi this Saturday will kick off his bid for a shot at a world title.
The actual fights in Philippines vs. the World will take place on Saturday night. These will be aired by ABS-CBN on Sunday starting 10:15 a.m.
Also fighting in the undercard is undefeated Filipino flyweight is Milan “Milenyo” Melindo, who will face off against South Korean Jin-Man Jeon.
ALA Promotions President Michael Aldeguer said he expects an exciting night from both the Philippine and foreign side.
“It’s hard to say which fight may steal the show, but, for one, Boom-Boom’s fights are always exciting. The fans know that anytime, Boom-Boom can knock out his opponent—or that he himself could be knocked out,” Aldeguer told John Pages of Sun.Star Cebu.