MANILA, Philippines – Filipino welterweight Mark Jason Melligen wants to emulate boxing figures who came before him, particularly Filipino boxing superstar Manny Pacquiao and retired boxer Z Gorres.
Melligen, who is coming off a unanimous decision win over Mexico’s Gabriel Martinez in the undercard of the Nonito Donaire-Fernando Montiel fight, said he looks up to Pacquiao because of his boxing skills.
"'Yung movement niya (Pacquiao), 'yung footwork atsaka 'yung suntok talagang malakas," he told Karen Davila and Vic de Leon Lima in dzMM's "Pasada Sais Trenta" on Wednesday.
"Si Pacquiao kasi parang in-born [boxer] na talaga iyan, eh," he added.
He also idolizes the 8-division champ because of his ability to entertain fight fans.
"Iyong [gusto] ko kay Pacquiao, iyong pag-entertain niya sa mga tao, 'pag sa laban," said Melligen.
On the other hand, Melligen is looking up to Gorres because of the latter’s resiliency and courage to overcome life’s trials.
Gorres was forced to retire after suffering a blood clot in the brain during a fight against Colombian Luis Melendez in 2009.
The Cebuano fought hard to recover from his injury, which rendered him partially paralyzed. After a series of operations and numerous therapies, Gorres regained the ability to walk again.
"Doon ako bumilib kay Gorres sa boxing... 'Yung pinakita niya ang tapang niya," said Melligen. "Nilabanan niya talaga yung nangyari sa kanya, kasi walang-wala na talaga siya eh."
Melligen remembered being deeply affected by Gorres’ collapse, even losing his match against Mexican Michel Rosales which followed Gorres’ bout.
Melligen now has a professional record of 21 wins and 2 losses with 14 of his victories coming by knockout.
He will again fight in the undercard of Donaire’s next bout on May 28.