^

Freeman Cebu Sports

Fuentes confident of crushing Nietes in WBO title showdown

EVEN IF FIGHT TAKES PLACE IN PHILIPPINES - Ryan Songalia - The Freeman

WBO minimumweight champion Moises Fuentes expressed confidence of beating WBO light flyweight titlist Donnie "Ahas" Nietes even if their title match takes place in the Philippines.

"A champion has to fight the best and I'm not worried at all because [WBO president] Francisco Valcarcel told me the judges were going to be neutral," said Fuentes. "In the ring the winner will be who ever had the best preparation for the fight, Donnie Nietes or Moises Fuentes."

"It's not Philippines versus Mexico, it's just him and I."

Fuentes manager/trainer Jorge Barrera Tapia,the brother of Mexican boxing legend Marco Antonio Barrera, shares the sentiment of his prized ward.

"We're never overconfident," said Barrera. "We are working really hard to bring a win to Mexico, but with a lot of hard work and physical conditioning."

Fuentes says that he feels Nietes is "a great champion, a legend and an excellent puncher," adding that "it's an honor to fight him." Fuentes is currently in light training at the Barrera Gym in Iztacalco, Mexico, but will step up the intensity once the holidays pass. Fuentes says that he is currently at 119 pounds, 11 pounds over the fight weight.

Fuentes, on the other hand, says that Marco Antonio Barrera has been a positive mentor for him.

"What Marco has always told me since I started to box was to always give it my all, to train like it's the last day of my life," said Fuentes. "He'd say, 'If you want poverty to end, here's your opportunity.' "Those words always motivate me to have a positive mind."

As confirmed earlier by ALA Promotions President Michael P. Aldeguer, the promoter of Nietes, that Nietes will face Fuentes in either February or March.

Aldeguer said that, while "nothing has been finalized or signed yet," the two will meet either in Nietes' home country of the Philippines or Fuentes' home country of Mexico.

Fuentes (16-1, 8KOs), of Mexico City, is coming off his biggest victory to date, a fifth-round knockout of faded former champion Ivan Calderon in October. The 27-year-old Fuentes has made two defenses of the title that he won by defeating Raul Garcia by split-decision last August.

The 30-year-old Nietes (31-1-3, 17KOs) of Bacolod City, is rated No. 2 by The Ring at  junior flyweight and has held belts at 105 and 108 pounds. Nietes is no stranger to fighting in Mexico, having made three title defenses on Mexican soil, winning all three. Nietes won his last fight - against Thai import Danai Meendaeng- by fifth round knockout in November.

Barrera, speaking with respected Filipino journalist Quinito Henson of The Philippine Star earlier this month, said that he would be accompanying Fuentes to Cebu for a Feb. 2 fight date to face Nietes. With only five weeks to go, a later date seems more viable.

The lone losses of both fighters have come when their opponents exceeded the weight limit.

EDITOR'S NOTE:Ryan Songalia is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America (BWAA) and is a columnist for The Ring magazine and contributor to GMA News. He can be reached at [email protected]. An archive of his work can be found at www.ryansongalia.com. One may also follow him on Twitter:@RyanSongalia.

vuukle comment

ALDEGUER

BACOLOD CITY

BARRERA GYM

BOXING WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA

DANAI MEENDAENG

DONNIE NIETES

FUENTES

MARCO ANTONIO BARRERA

MOISES FUENTES

NIETES

  • Latest
Latest
Latest
abtest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with