Boxing: Ancajas all set to battle Martinez

Dennis Gasgonia, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 27 2022 01:04 AM

Filipino champion Jerwin Ancajas via Joven Jimenez
Filipino champion Jerwin Ancajas and Fernando Martinez pose during the weigh in. Photo from Joven Jimenez

World junior bantamweight champion Jerwin Ancajas will climb the ring with additional motivation in Las Vegas this weekend.

His IBF title fight will be his 10th defense since winning the crown from McJoe Arroyo in 2016.

Ancajas said he felt hyped up after hearing that he could tie the late great Gabriel "Flash" Elorde with the most number of title defenses in a single division.

"Masaya ako kung makakapantay tayo sa nagawa ng legend natin sa larangan ng boxing. Nagbibigay iyan ng motivation iyan sa atin," said the Panabo City, Davao del Norte native who holds a record of 33-1-2, with 22 KOs.

But he will be facing an Olympian, who owns a mean left hook and a vicious overhand right.

"Pumapasok talaga ito," said Ancajas of Martinez, an undefeated Argentinean with a record of 13-0.

"Sinabi nga niya sa presscon na talagang tignan daw namin kung sinong magaling magadjust sa taas ng ring."

Aside from the historical significance of the fight, a victory will be crucial for Ancajas who wants to pursue the postponed title unification against WBO junior bantam king Kazuto Ioka.

Although climbing the weight remains an option, as he could meet Japan's Naoya Inoue at bantamweight, Ancajas said he still favors a title unification. 

"Naghihintay pa rin tayo ng unification, kung sakaling palarin tayo bukas," he said.