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By Rich Mazon

Thu, 28 Aug 2014

Unlike Manny Pacquiao, most of our boxers do not have minions that ogle at their every move and most of them do not have persistent hangers-on that follow them wherever they go.

Rey Perez is one of them. In fact he had no one with him when he travelled last week to Mexico to fight an undefeated hometown fighter who is looking to pad his record on national television against the Filipino who has fought and lost twice in that country in the past.

The 23 year old boxer out of Sindangan, Zamboanga Del Norte was without a trainer or a coach, without a cut man and without his promoter or manager who should have represented him in a foreign land. He did not even have hand wraps and tapes with him when he ventured in Tijuana in a bout he again lost.

Perez went straight home to the Philippines after his solo endeavor last Saturday. He is fortunate to have been injury-free after being battered in 5 full rounds of a fight without any supervision from a corner he can trust and a cut man that can treat his wounds or cuts if he had suffered them inside the ring.

Perez told this writer that he made the decision to stop the fight and not come out fighting after the 5th round of his one sided fight with undefeated Mexican, Edilvado Ortega. He had to. There is no one that will do that for him. He asked a fellow boxer, Drian Francisco, who was there to watch the fights, to assist in his corner out of necessity and frustration. His hand wraps and tapes were given to him by another countryman, Marvin Somodio, who was there as a coach to one of his fighters.

But what if he did suffer a life threatening injury inside the ring in Mexico? Who will be looking after this poor kid while he?s there? Who will take care of him in a land that does not even understand his language? Who will inform his family back home?

Why was Perez sent by his lonesome to the lion?s den? Was he a sacrificial lamb to a foreign boxer who is looking to advance his boxing careeri in front of his hometown fans?

And the nagging question is who did this to Perez? Was it a countryman, a fellow Filipino who is looking to make easy money out of him? Were his true manager and promoter even aware of this?

The other nagging question is where did the allocated money for his trainer, his cut man go? I hope there was a plan to send a team with him in the first place. Now, whose pocket did these allocated dollars (flight money and allowance) go to?

Perez admitted to this writer before leaving for the Philippines last Sunday that he was not fully compensated yet on the full amount that he agreed and signed for this fight with Ortega. I again hope that he gets his due salary for all the risks he went through last week.

Now the more important question is, what will the Games and Amusements Board (GAB) do about this incident? Will the venerable leadership of the GAB look into this mess, act on it and prevent it from ever happening again? Or will they just let this pass?

Because this reflects on the GAB, it all points to them whether they know about it or not? And they should act on this. If this happened again on another poor boxer and God forbid he gets hurt, people will go back to this case as a precedent.

Our poor boxers deserve more. They deserve protection from the very agency that is tasked and mandated by Philippine law to protect them and uphold the dignity of the sport of boxing. They should be protected from the sharks and money-grabbing individuals who do not care about their welfare and the welfare of the sport but instead care only about the money they can pocket from foreign promoters.

Nothing less but a full investigation is asked of the GAB regarding this matter. We will be waiting.

You can reach the author at and on Twitter @Freemazon910.

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