Nonito Donaire as seen in this promotional photo from Cobra Energy Drink. Photo: Handout
MANILA, Philippines – With more than one week to go before fight night, Nonito "The Filipino Flash" Donaire is fast approaching peak form as his training camp for his title bout against Simpiwe Vetyeka continues at the Elorde Gym.
Donaire is challenging the South African Vetyeka for the World Boxing Association (WBA) featherweight championship in what will be only his second fight at the 126-pound weight division.
In an interview with Ronnie Nathanielsz that appeared on Boxing Scene, Donaire said his training now involves not only sparring but also punch mitts, as well as a "rigorous sprint routine."
"Just putting the hand-wraps on, I was already tired and sweating because of the heat," Donaire said. "But I went eight rounds, even though I planned to go to ten. But there was no need for it. I felt really good."
"Work with the mitts, work with the bag, because you really don’t have to do too much sparring, but do a lot of cardio exercises after sparring, and that's what we did," he added.
Donaire's father and trainer, Nonito Sr., said the "Filipino Flash" is currently walking around at 132 pounds, but there is enough time to make the weight limit for the May 31 fight.
"I am 110% happy," Nonito Sr. said. "Nonito is so disciplined, so I don’t need to watch him."
Nathanielsz reported that Donaire sparred with former WBC super bantamweight silver champion Sylvester Lopez and featherweight fighter Vergel Nebran. He also did his sprint routine, which Donaire said is important for his heart rate.
"Early on in training camp, we maximized our recovery, which is just to get the heart rate low," he explained. "Now, we are pushing the heart rate up. Now my heart can go both sides of the heart rate, and we feel good."
"Recovery is fast, and we are ready to go 12 rounds," he added.
Donaire said he will spar 10 rounds on Monday and 12 on Wednesday.
"We should peak (then)," he said. "When that happens, we'll be ready to go."
Donaire is coming off a ninth-round stoppage of Armenian rival Vic Darchinyan in his featherweight debut.