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List of Articles by Joaquin Henson



Cintron may be Paclite’s foe for vacant title

By Joaquin Henson
PhilBoxing.com
06 Mar 2019



Now that Donnie Nietes has relinquished his WBO superflyweight title, No. 1 contender Aston Palicte is awaiting advice from the governing body’s president Paco Valcarcel as to whom he will fight for the vacant throne and it looks like No. 7 Jeyvier Cintron of Puerto Rico may be his next opponent.

Palicte, 28, solidified his grip on the No. 1 spot by halting Puerto Rico’s Jose Martinez in the second round in Alpine, San Diego, last January. Nietes was then ordered to face Palicte in a mandatory defense and a purse bid was set but ALA Boxing president Michael Aldeguer announced there would be no rematch. Last September, Nietes and Palicte battled to a split 12-round draw for the vacant crown at the Forum in Inglewood, California. Nietes’ withdrawal paves the way for Palicte to meet another contender for the belt.

Nietes described the draw with Palicte as “painful” and in his letter of withdrawal to Valcarcel, said “it took me a long time to think about this very difficult decision but I feel that every fight for me at this stage of my career is crucial for my future … I have long been meaning to have a career-defining fight (and) there is not much time for me in this sport at 37 … I hope to seek bigger fights with the world champions of the other organizations … it may or may not happen but I believe this is the right decision under this situation … also, I would want to give my fellow Filipino Aston a chance to fight for the world title to bring pride and glory to our country.” Nietes is making himself available to battle the winner of the April 26 duel between WBC superflyweight titlist Srisaket Sor Rungvisai of Thailand and former WBA/WBO flyweight ruler Juan Francisco Estrada of Mexico at the Forum.

Aldeguer said “a rematch with Palicte is an emotional and mental challenge for (Nietes) as he went through a very difficult stage after their first fight which ended in a controversial draw and fighting a fellow Filipino again who is from the same region where he was born makes it even more difficult.” Both Nietes and Palicte are from Negros Occidental. Nietes is from Murcia while Palicte is from Bago City.

Palicte’s manager Jason Soong called Nietes a future Hall of Famer in paying tribute to the fighter who has held world titles in three divisions over an uninterrupted period of over 10 years. “We wish Donnie the best of luck in his next move,” said Soong. “We don’t know what will happen yet. I’m hoping by next week we should have a path already. So much is going on but still no certainty. I’ve been in touch with the Roy Jones team (in charge of promoting Palicte) and there’s a current offer to fight in Puerto Rico against Cintron. We’ve been getting a lot of feelers. Just one more win and Aston hopefully will become a world champion.”

The WBO ranks Estrada as No. 2 but the Mexican is committed to fight Rungvisai. The No. 3 contender Ryuichi Funai will challenge IBF superflyweight champion Jerwin Ancajas in Stockton, California, on May 4. No. 4 Kazuto Ioka, a three-time world champion, lost to Nietes on a split decision last December while No. 5 So Ishida and No. 6 Koki Eto have lost in world title bids.

Cintron, 24, is a two-time Olympian who’s just as tall as the 5-8 Palicte. A southpaw, Cintron is trained by former world champion and countryman Ivan Calderon and has a 9-0 record with four KOs. He turned pro in 2017 and has fought in Florida, Puerto Rico, Colombia and the Dominican Republic in his brief career. Palicte’s record is 25-2-1, with 21 KOs.

It’s likely Cintron will be chosen as Palicte’s opponent for the vacant throne since the WBO’s head office is in Puerto Rico, Valcarcel is Puerto Rican and the Filipino just disposed of Puerto Rico’s best bet for another world crown. If it’s not Cintron, a Japanese fighter will be picked----Ioka or Ishida or Eto. “Our No. 1 goal is to be a world champion and do whatever that takes,” said Soong. “We just want that world championship and of course, preferably it’s not against a fellow Pinoy.”

Photo: Boxing legend Roy Jones, Jr. (left) and Aston Palicte.


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