CEBU CITY, Philippines – Donnie Nietes, out to become the longest-reigning Filipino boxing champion ever, welcomed the opportunity to bring his act to the United States.
The reigning WBO light-flyweight king has gone undefeated for 10 years now and has been a world champion for nearly seven years.
If he holds on to the belt until Dec. 31 this year, he will surpass the record of the late Gabriel “Flash” Elorde, a champion for seven years and three months from 1960 to 1967.
Nietes is out to rewrite history.
“I’m ready,” he said Friday during an exclusive dinner party hosted by his promoters, Tony and Michael Aldeguer, at the latter’s luxurious beach house in Danao.
Nietes won the 108 lb title in 2011 and has kept it since. Last May 10, at the Mall of Asia Arena, he knocked out Mexico’s Moises Fuentes in a rematch of their controversial draw in 2013.
Dennis Canete, vice president of ALA Promotions, said they’re trying to book a fight for Nietes against a Mexican opponent in Los Angeles in November.
It will be a voluntary defense for Nietes, who can pick his opponent from among the top 10 in his division.
“We’re looking at Nov. 8 in Los Angeles because of the heavy presence of Mexicans or Latinos there. It will be the first Pinoy Pride presentation in the United States,” said Canete.
He said they don’t have an opponent in mind yet but assured everyone on the table it’s not going to be a “hand-picked” opponent.
Nietes, who turned 32 last May 13, looked excited.
“I’ve fought three times in Mexico but never in the United States,” said Nietes, who brought his shining WBO belt to the party and proudly carried it around.
Nietes said his promoters will decide whom he will fight but added that as a champion he’s ready to fight anybody, anywhere.
“Kahit sino. Kahit saan,” he said.