MANILA - Inactive for the whole of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Filipino boxer Jerwin Ancajas looks to get back in the ring in April when he makes a mandatory defense of his IBF junior-bantamweight title.
According to Sean Gibbons of Manny Pacquiao (MP) Promotions, they are planning for Ancajas to fight in April against Mexican boxer Jonathan Rodriguez.
"I believe by next Wednesday, we'll have a date, we'll announce that fight, and once we take care of Rodriguez, everybody's on the table," Gibbons said during an appearance on "Power and Play," last Saturday.
"The date we're looking at is April. We're trying to get in the ring by April," he further confirmed.
Ancajas has not fought since December 2019, when he stopped Miguel Gonzales in the sixth round to make his eighth successful defense of his IBF belt.
He remains dedicated to his training despite his inactivity, and is currently in Los Angeles where he works with his coach, Joven Jimenez and fellow Filipino boxer Jonas Sultan.
The 29-year-old boxer assures that he'll be ready for the Rodriguez fight in April, as well as for the bigger fights that will follow.
"Hindi naman po bago sa akin na matagal maglaban. Ganoon pa rin ang trabaho namin, tuloy-tuloy pa rin sa pag-ensayo, antay pa rin kung kailan mabigyan," said Ancajas, who won the IBF belt in September 2016 by outpointing McJoe Arroyo.
"'Di natin masisis na bakit matagal," he pointed out. "Ang sa akin, focus lang talaga ako sa ensayo sir at kung ano mang ibigay na laban sa akin."
Should Ancajas get past Rodriguez in April, the plan is for him to pursue a title unification bout against WBO champion Kazuto Ioka.
"Hopefully, we get Rodriguez, and then you know, if it's Ioka, or whoever it is, it's a signature fight," said Gibbons.
"The time is now," he declared. "Jerwin is ready for the best."