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List of Articles by Joaquin Henson



Pinoy prospects cited

By Joaquin Henson
PhilBoxing.com
30 Jan 2019


L-R: Martin, Bornea and Cataraja.

The Ring Magazine, the so-called Bible of Boxing, listed several Filipino fighters as top prospects in a section on the “State of the Game” in its February 2019 issue. It was a clear indication that the outlook is bright for Philippine boxing even beyond the years of the reigning Filipino world champions today.

At the moment, there are eight Filipino world titlists, including two recognized on an interim basis. They are WBA welterweight champion Sen. Manny Pacquiao, WBA bantamweight Nonito Donaire, Jr., IBF superflyweight Jerwin Ancajas, WBO superflyweight Donnie Nietes, WBO minimumweight Vic Saludar, IBO bantamweight Michael Dasmarinas, interim WBA featherweight Jhack Tepora and interim WBA bantamweight Reymart Gaballo.

Tepora would’ve been stripped of his belt if he had gone on to battle Hugo Ruiz in the undercard of Pacquiao’s mainer against Adrien Broner in Las Vegas last Jan. 19. Tepora scaled 5 1/2 pounds over the limit of 126. Gaballo, 22, is the other interim Filipino world titleholder. He’s set to face Japan’s Yuya Nakamura in a 10-rounder at the Midas Hotel, Roxas Boulevard, on Feb. 9. Gaballo is ranked No. 1 by the WBA in the bantamweight division and has a 20-0 record, with 17 KOs.

Under the category “Keep An Eye On,” The Ring singled out bantamweight Carl Jammes (Wonder Boy) Martin, superflyweights Jade (Hurricane) Bornea and K. J. Cataraja, lightflyweight Christian (The Bomb) Araneta and minimumweight Samuel (Silent Assassin) Salva as fighters on the rise. Another category “New Blood” listed featherweight Mark Magsayo.

Martin, 19, is ranked No. 10 by the WBO in the bantamweight division. The Ifugao southpaw totes an 11-0 record, with 10 KOs. He’ll make his Manila debut against Thailand’s Petchchorhae Kokietgym at the Midas Hotel on Feb. 16. Martin is backed up by Ever Bilena CEO and PBA Blackwater team owner Dioceldo Sy. Bornea, 23, has a 13-0 record, with 9 KOs. The Cotabato del Norte bantamweight slugger has chalked up KO wins over veterans Albert Alcoy, Nicardo Calamba, Macrea Gandionco, Alvin Bais and John Rey Lauza all of whom checked in with over 20 bouts under their belts.

Cataraja, 23, is the reigning WBO Youth superflyweight champion with a 9-0 record, including 7 KOs. Last November, he outpointed Mexico’s Victor Hugo Reyes to claim the vacant WBO Youth crown in Cebu City. Catajara previously disposed of Indonesia’s Frengky Rohi in three rounds. Araneta, 23, is rated No. 9 by the WBA in the lightflyweight division. His record is 17-0, with 14 KOs. The southpaw from Cebu holds the WBC Asian Boxing Council Silver and WBO Oriental 108-pound titles.

Salva, 21, is ranked No. 5 by the IBF in the 105-pound division and has a record of 16-0, with 10 KOs. There is talk that the fighter from Gingoog City, Misamis Oriental, will meet No. 7 contender Rene Mark Cuarto of Zamboanga del Norte in an eliminator to determine the next challenger of IBF champion Carlos Licona. Last December, Licona scored a split 12-round decision over Filipino Mark Anthony Barriga to win the vacant IBF crown in Los Angeles. Licona is booked to stake his crown for the first time at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on Feb. 16. Salva is expected to train with Ancajas at the Survival Camp in Magallanes, Cavite while Cuarto is trained by Nonoy Neri.

Magsayo, 23, has an 18-0 record, with 13 KOs and is ranked No. 1 by the WBC and No. 8 by the WBO in the featherweight division. He used to be the WBO’s No. 1 contender but has slid down the ladder due to inactivity. Magsayo hasn’t fought since November 2017 and if he doesn’t see action soon, he’ll lose his No. 1 ranking in the WBC, too. He was scheduled to fight in Mexico and Texas last year but both bouts were scratched because of contractual issues. Magsayo has a live promotional contract with ALA Boxing but disregarded it in signing with Malaysia’s Vikram Sivapragasam and Las Vegas fight manager Cameron Dunkin’s brother Joe. Unless Magsayo is able to solve his contractual problems, he’s not going far in his campaign for a world title.

As for Pacquiao, here’s what The Ring said: “Pacquiao signing with (Al) Haymon opened the doors to plenty of fights previously out of reach … it’s fun to imagine him against many of those names … while it’d be wonderful to see fights like Pacquiao versus (Keith) Thurman, the rest of the division has been deep enough to thrive without Manny or Floyd (Mayweather) … it looks like 2019 could be a good year for the PBC (Premier Boxing Champions) welterweights.”


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