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List of Articles by Dong Secuya


 

PEÑALOSA FAVORS MELINDO OVER YAEGASHI

By Dong Secuya
PhilBoxing.com
25 Apr 2017



OSAKA, Japan – Former two-time world champion Gerry Peñalosa favors Milan 'El Metodico' Melindo over Akira Yaegashi when the two meet on May 21 at Ariake Colosseum in Tokyo to settle once and for all who really is the real IBF light flyweight king.

Yaegashi won the IBF world light flyweight belt on Dec. 29, 2015 from Javier Mendoza of Mexico six months after Mendoza's successful first title defense against Melindo. Melindo and Mendoza were later ordered by the IBF to fight in an eliminator for the right to face Yaegashi but Mendoza backed out before the fight date. Upon the request of Melindo's promoter Michael Aldeguer, the IBF, in July, 2016, ordered Yaegashi to face Melindo as his mandatory challenger but Yaegashi refused to fight Melindo after suffering a torn rotator cuff during his tough title defense against Martin Tecuapetla forcing the IBF to order an Interim title fight between the top contenders Melindo and Fahlan Sakkreerin Jr. of Thailand which Melino won via UD in Cebu on Nov. 26, 2106. Regular champion Yaegashi (24-5-0, 12KOs) and Interim champion Melindo (35-2-0, 12KOs) will finally meet next month.


Former world champion Gerry Peñalosa (R) poses with former two-time foe and former world champion Masamori Tokuyama at the APA Hotel Namba in Osaka, Japan April 22. Photo by Dong Secuya.

“I see it as 60-40 in favor of Melindo,” Peñalosa said. Peñalosa was in Osaka to support former Filipino WBO world bantamweight champion Marlon Tapales who was stripped of his title after failing to make the contracted weight but nevertheless go back home victorious after he stopped Shohei Omori in the 11th round Sunday here.

“Yaegashi is growing old and have slowed down a bit so it's a good opportunity for Milan to wrest the title from him,” said Peñalosa who personally saw two fights of the now 34-year-old Japanese. Melindo is at his peak at age 29.

“I'd like to comeback here in Japan to watch that fight,” Peñalosa, who fought three times in Japan and is still very popular among boxing aficionados here, added.

The Philippines is now down to three world champions after Tapales failed to retain his title: Manny Pacquiao is the WBO welterweight champion, Jerwin Ancajas holds the IBF super flyweight belt and Melindo has the IBF Interim flyweight title. Longest Filipino reigning world champion Donnie 'Ahas' Nietes will have the opportunity to raise it back to four when he faces Komgrich Nantapech this Saturday in Cebu City for the vacant IBF world flyweight crown.


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