Jerwin Ancajas
Jerwin back to camp
Joaquin Henson (The Philippine Star) - March 20, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — IBF superflyweight champion Jerwin Ancajas is back training at the Survival Camp in Magallanes, Cavite, after two months of seclusion in Dipolog and while it’s not sure when his twice-postponed title defense against No. 3 contender Jonathan Javier Rodriguez will be reset, he’s staying in shape to keep from getting rusty.

Ancajas and trainer/manager Joven Jimenez relocated from Magallanes to Dipolog last Jan. 16 to avoid the onset of ashfall due to the Taal Volcano eruption. They set up camp in Big Boss Cement president Gilbert Cruz’ resthouse with six sparmates to prepare for Ancajas’ ninth defense that was scheduled at the Cosmopolitan Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas on April 11.

Ancajas was set to host a media conference in Dipolog last Saturday but the gathering was cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak. Instead, Ancajas flew back to Manila that day and stayed in lawyer Bobbet Bruce’s condo unit in Legazpi Village with Jimenez while awaiting advice on whether the fight would push through. Ancajas resumed training at the Navy gym in Fort Bonifacio. MP Promotions head Sean Gibbons arranged for Ancajas and Jimenez to leave for Las Vegas today but the trip was called off when Top Rank announced all promotions in March and April were postponed.

Last Wednesday, Ancajas and Jimenez motored back to the Survival Camp where they will stay until there is confirmation of when his next fight will take place. Jimenez said Ancajas has brought his weight back to 135 pounds so he has bulk to burn in reworking his training schedule. Ancajas hasn’t missed a day of training since the start of the year.

“Focused lang kami sa training,” said Jimenez. “Itutuloy kaagad ang laban pag naayos na ang COVID-19.  Close ang Survival Camp sa outsiders at walang makakapasok. Makakapag-training si Jerwin ng mabuti.” Jimenez said nutrition expert Jeaneth Aro continues to supervise Ancajas’ diet closely to keep within weight parameters and maintain strength conditions.

Ancajas was initially slated to face Rodriguez in Carson City last Nov. 2 but it was cancelled when the Mexican was late in applying for his US visa so that when it was issued, there was no time to complete California state medical requirements for a license. Rodriguez, 24, hasn’t fought since halting two-time world title challenger Felipe Orucuta in the 10th round in June last year. Orucuta collapsed on the canvas and lost consciousness. He was administered CPR to revive his heartbeat, left the ring on a stretcher, went on a medically-induced coma, had surgery to remove a blood clot in the brain and was confined in a hospital for seven weeks before discharge.

If the fight is reset to June, it will mean a one-year layoff for Rodriguez. Ancajas, 28, stayed active and stopped Chile’s Miguel Gonzalez in the sixth round to post his eighth successful title defense in Puebla, Mexico, last December.

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