MANILA, Philippines – "The Filipino Flash" Nonito Donaire Jr. said that being a father has helped him to become a more responsible athlete and a better fighter.
The Filipino-American said that his firstborn, Jarel, has fueled his motivation especially during training.
"Nakikita ko ‘yung extra motivation… Especially pag nakikita mo ang son mo na happy na happy sya. Nakikita mo na the simplest things mean so much more to them than to yourself. So pag nasa training ako, nageenjoy ako in everything that I do," Donaire said in an interview on dzMM’s Sports Talk.
The Filipino Flash said that his wife, Rachel, and Jarel always keep him company during his training camp.
He believes that he works even harder with his family around.
"Gusto kong makita nila na grabe ang training ko, I want them to understand na 'papa is working very hard'," said Donaire.
The Filipino boxer knows that he needs to be thoroughly prepared to go up against WBA featherweight super champion Simpiwe Vetyeka, a South African fighter with a respectable record of 26 victories and 2 defeats.
Despite Donaire’s credentials, the Filipino Flash will be coming in as the underdog against Vetyeka.
"Tinalo nya si yung super champ na Chris John, who was unbeaten for a long time… Kelangan ko talaga to work hard, to be focused and to be ready for every moment," he said.
Donaire said that having a child has taught him to become a more responsible person and athlete.
"When you get married, you try to be responsible. But when you have a child you have to be responsible," he said.
Donaire will be facing Vetyeka in Macau on May 31. A win against the South African will make the Filipino-American a five-division world champion.