MANILA, Philippines – World super bantamweight champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire is already plotting his next steps even before he takes on fellow super bantamweight titlist Jeffrey Mathebula on July 9.
Donaire will battle Mathebula at the Home Depot Center in an effort to unify the WBO and the IBF super-bantamweight championships.
Although Donaire says he is not looking past Mathebula, he admits he is already thinking about future opponents, including Japanese fighter Toshiaki Nishioka, Mexican brawler Jorge Arce and Cuban boxer Guillermo Rigondeaux.
“I think that the best guy in this division that I want to prove myself against is Nishioka,” Donaire told RingTV, when asked about the order of preference for his opponents.
“I think that Nishioka is the better guy than all of these guys,” he added.
Nishioka (39-4-3, 24 KOs) does not hold a title, but is the No. 1 ranked super bantamweight by The RING Magazine.
“(Nishioka) has proven himself above all of these guys, and I promised him that I would fight him. So maybe if everything goes well this year, then maybe I can fight him in another fight,” Donaire said.
“I did promise Nishioka, but definitely, after Nishioka, I want to fight guys who have the belt. I’ve told my manager, Cameron Dunkin, that we want to fight all of those guys. I want to be undisputed,” he added.
Rigondeaux holds the WBA super bantamweight belt, while Mexican boxer Abner Mares holds the WBC belt.
Donaire said the fighter who makes an “easy negotiation” will most likely be his next foe.
“If Mares makes it a difficult negotiation, then I’ll go with Rigondeaux. If Rigondeaux makes it hard for me, then I’ll go with Mares,” he said.
“So I have my plans, and that’s to fight Nishioka after Mathebula...I’m eager to fight anybody out there. If everything goes well, I want the WBA and the WBC champion,” Donaire added.
“The Filipino Flash” emphasized that his goal is to be the undisputed king of the super bantamweight division before eventually moving up to the featherweight division.
“If those guys want to fight me, then please, just hold on to your belts. I want to come after them. I’m fighting for the IBF belt, and then I want to fight another champion,” Donaire said.
“I want to accomplish my goal of being the undisputed champion.”