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‘Nietes deserves to beat Elorde’s boxing record’

‘Nietes deserves to beat Elorde’s boxing record’

Sunstar Bacolod

Bacolod City Mayor Monico Puentevella yesterday said that “if anyone deserves to surpass the record of the great Filipino boxer Gabriel “Flash” Elorde, it’s Donnie “Ahas” Nietes.

Puentevella described Nietes as a humble and talented guy just like Elorde. “Humility is hard to find these days in champions,” he said.

The 32-year-old and reigning World Boxing Organization (WBO) light flyweight champion Nietes (33-4-1 win-draw-loss 19 KOs), stressed that he is ready not only to defend his title but also to break the record for the longest reigning Filipino boxing champion – Elorde.

“Ahas” is set to face Mexican challenger Carlos “Chapito” Velarde (26-1-3 win-draw-loss 14KOs) on November 15 in the Pinoy Pride 28 at Cebu City Waterfront Hotel and Casino.

The Murcia-born Nietes said they have been in tough training for months, and studied Velarde’s previous fights to ensure that they have the right game plan.

“We want to make sure that we win this fight,” said the champion. When asked if he plans to knockout Velarde, Nietes said he wants to stick to the game plan.

“I’m not looking at a quick knockout to end the fight early. I want to stick to the game plan because if I get eager to knock him out, I might lose the fight,” he said. “But if ever there is an opportunity, why not?”

The long-time champion is not focused on surpassing the seven years and three months reign of Elorde but on keeping his title.

“If I win this fight, I will definitely exceed Flash Elorde’s record,” he said.

Nietes asked his fans and supporters, especially the Negrenses, to pray for his victory and hoped no injury will be incurred during the fight.

Meanwhile, former WBO minimum-weight titlist Merlito “Tiger” Sabillo of Barangay Singcang-Airport, Bacolod City and Toboso town is looking to regain his fighting form after losing to Mexican Francisco Rodriguez Jr (14-2 win-loss) via a 10th round TKO in Arena Monterrey, Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico last March.

The 30-year old Sabillo (23-1-1 win-draw-loss 12KOs) will face Indonesian Farris Nenggo.

“Prince” Albert Pagara, who will be defending his International Boxing Federation Inter-Continental super bantamweight title against Raul Hirales (22-1-3 win-draw-loss record, 11KOs) is also in the main card.

Hirales is coming off from a defeat against Luis Melendez via unanimous decision last August for the vacant WBO NABO super bantamweight title.

The 30-year old Hirales (22-1-3 win-draw-loss, 11KOs) is the younger brother of Ramon Garcia Hirales who lost to Nietes for the WBO minimumweight title in 2010 at the University of St. La Salle.

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