Mission accomplished: Ancajas feels he did it right in US debut

Dennis Gasgonia, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 04 2018 11:53 PM | Updated as of Aug 22 2018 02:22 AM

Jerwin Ancajas watches as his hands were getting taped for his US debut. Photo from Top Rank's Facebook page

Filipino boxing champion Jerwin Ancajas felt that he has accomplished his mission in his first US assignment by halting his Mexican challenger late in the fight in Corpus Christi, Texas on Saturday (Sunday, Manila time).

The reigning IBF junior bantamweight champion showed his ring generalship and superior boxing IQ by decking the younger and eager Israel Gonzalez thrice throughout the match.

After initially dropping the Mexican 55 seconds into the first round, Ancajas took his sweet time to pick Gonzalez apart before going for the kill in the 10th. 

"Nagiingat talaga ako. Nakaabang kasi lagi 'yung counterpunch niya. Nakita 'yun ni coach so sabi niya jab jab muna (I was being careful. Gonzalez was always ready to counter that's why my coach said to utilize my jab well)," said Ancajas in an online interview with ABS-CBN News.

"Nung naramdaman kong nafu-frustrate na siya, nakikita ko na 'yung dating ng suntok niya, doon ako bumitaw ng kaliwa (When I sensed frustion from his part and began reading his punches, that's when I popped the left hand)."

That vicious left straight int he 10th sent Gonzalez reeling to the canvas. The Mexican courageously stood up but was brought down again with another devastating knockout that effectively halted the match.

After seeing his opponent down, the champion immediately went to Gonzalez to console his opponent.

"Lumapit po ako bilang respeto. In-encourage ko siya na marami pa siyang darating na laban (I approched him to pay my respect. I told him he has many more fights to come)," said Ancajas, who is being groomed to become Manny Pacquiao's successor.

Ancajas is relieved that he was able to deliver a knockout in front of the American fans, who are known to demand much from their boxing champions.

He said he wanted to leave a lasting impression in his first fight in the US.

"Masaya ako't nag-enjoy sila, maganda ang laban. Parang mission accomplished ba (I'm happy they enjoyed the bout. I feel that I accomplished my mission)," he said.

For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.