CEBU CITY, Philippines – Donnie Nietes gears up for a battle royale with Mexico’s Moises Fuentes in a duel of world champions even as Genesis Servania and Jimrex Jaca slug it out with tough Asian rivals in the Pinoy Pride XVIII: World Champion vs. World Champion on March 2 at the Pacific grand ballroom of Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino here.
Nietes (31-1-3, 17 KOs) defends his WBO light flyweight crown against Fuentes (16-1, 8KOs), the WBO minimumweight crown-holder who moved up from the 105-pound division to the 108-pound class just to challenge the soft-spoken Filipino fighter in the main event of the blockbuster card put up by ALA Promotions and ABS-CBN Sports.
“This is one of the biggest Pinoy Pride series that we’ve put in place together,” said ALA Promotions president and CEO Michael P. Aldeguer in yesterday’s press conference at St. Mark Hotel. “This is the first time that a world champion will be coming over to fight for a world title on Philippine soil. I hope the Cebuanos will come and support this event.”
“It’s one of the most difficult negotiations we ever had. Bringing a world champion here is no joke, but we’re committed to our fans to bring in world-class fights here. This is a historic fight, a world champion fighting against a world champion and Cebu deserves to host it as it (Pinoy Pride) all started here,” added Aldeguer.
Meanwhile, Servania (19-0, 6KOs), the reigning WBO Asia-Pacific and WBC Silver super bantamweight titlist, will stake his unbeaten record against Indonesian Angky Angkota (26-8, 14KOs), while the resurgent Jaca (30-6-3, 20KOs) tries to stretch his streak to nine as he squares off with Rachamongkol Sor Pleonchit (13-4, 5KOs) of Thailand’s world-renowned Kokiet Gym.
Angkota is best known as the only fighter to beat Nietes, now a two-division world champion. He currently holds the IBF Pan-Pacific and WBO Asia-Pacific bantamweight crowns. – Emmanuel Villaruel/The Freeman Newspaper Service
But Servania is unfazed by Angkota’s credentials.
“I’m confident of beating him (Angkota). He’s not that a good fighter and besides, I trained hard for this fight,” said Servania.
Jaca, for his part, is riding high on an eight-fight run although he is expected to have his hands full against Rachamongkol, a Muay Thai warrior who once reigned as the WBC International featherweight champion.
The rest of the card features Mark Bernaldez of Butuan City vs. Rolando Omela of Davao City; Ralph Lulu of Sultan Kudarat vs. Alvin Makiling of Malaybalay, Bukidnon; Juren Labordo of Bacolod City vs. Marlou Talili of Guindulman, Bohol; Rey Morales of Himamaylan City vs. Abel Gayhon of Malaybalay; and Kazuma Ejiri of Kobe, Japan vs. Andrew Palas of Cebu City.
Tickets are priced at P250 for balcony, P350 for ballroom, P500 for golden seats, P1,250 for VIP 4th row, P1,500 for VIP 3rd row, P2,000 for VIP 2nd row, P3,000 for VIP first row, and P4,000 for Platinum VIP.
For reservations and other inquiries, one may contact 505-9513, 0923-1072890, 0915-8690905, 0927-5612059 or visit http://www.alaboxing.com/.