Tepora to stay at featherweight
Emmanuel B. Villaruel (The Freeman) - January 22, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Despite being hobbled by weight problems that led to the cancellation of his fight in the undercard of the Manny Pacquiao-Adrien Broner duel last Sunday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Jhack 'El Capitan' Tepora doesn't have any plans of moving up in weight.

Not just yet for the time being.

The undefeated Cebuano world boxing champion was supposed to defend his WBA interim featherweight title against Mexican challenger Hugo Ruiz but his US debut turned out to be a huge letdown after he tipped the scales at 131.5 pounds, 5.5 pounds over the regulatory 126-pound limit under the featherweight class.

International matchmaker and promoter Sampson Lewkowicz, the manager of Ruiz, then moved for the bout to be called off as he doesn't want to risk the health of Tepora.

Weight troubles already hounded the 23-year-old Tepora from the time he left Manila last week. He was overweight by 20 pounds while on his way to Los Angeles.

On the eve of the official weigh-in, fears that Tepora won't be able to make weight further escalated after Tepora himself declared that he was still overweight by six pounds.

Inspite of his predicament, Tepora insists he will stay as in featherweight division, and that he would come back even stronger.

"I am sorry to all those who were affected by my mistake, especially to sir Manny (Pacquiao). I have learned my lessons well and I promise it won't happen again," said Tepora, who sports a spotless 22-0 record spiked with 17KOs. "I will stay as a featherweight, and I will come back stronger."

MP Promotions head Joe Ramos, who now promotes Tepora, assured they got Tepora's back.

Ramos said that pending confirmation from the WBA, Tepora will remain as a champion. They plan to left him fight again in two or three month's time. (FREEMAN)

MANNY PACQUIAO
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