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List of Articles by Joaquin Henson



Arizala eager to return home

By Joaquin Henson
PhilBoxing.com
01 May 2019


Arizala.

After undergoing two surgeries to address the acute subdural hemorrhage he suffered in the wake of a knockout loss over a month ago, Masbate featherweight boxer Renerio Arizala is recovering at the Yokohama City Minato Red Cross Hospital and will likely come home in two weeks.

By the time Arizala returns here, his live-in partner will have given birth to their first child. She is expected to deliver this week.

Matchmaker Art Monis, who arranged Arizala’s ill-fated fight against Tsuyoshi Tameda at the Osanbashi Hall in Yokohama, said the stricken fighter is now able to walk slowly on his own. Arizala, 24, never went down but was visibly hurt when the referee stepped in to halt the bout in the sixth round. He was helped back to his corner by trainer Jonathan Penalosa, sat on a stool for about three minutes then stepped out of the ring and collapsed. Arizala was rushed to the hospital and within an hour of his arrival, neurosurgeon Dr. Kagemichi Nagao performed a craniotomy to remove the blood clot in the brain. The surgery involved chiseling out a piece of Arizala’s skull to insert a tube to drain the clot. A second operation, called a cranioplasty, was done last week to put back the bone in the skull.

Arizala would’ve died if the first surgery had been delayed. He has been confined at the Yokohama hospital since last March 31 and the Japan Boxing Commission (JBC) is footing the bill. Monis said the estimate is the bill has gone up to the equivalent of over P2.6 Million. He is now undergoing rehabilitation as the left side of his body has been compromised by the injury.

Penalosa’s wife Shelly de la Pena and a Japanese friend who speaks Pilipino, Yoshinori Mitsui, take turns in watching over Arizala in the hospital. De la Pena lives in Japan where she has worked for over 10 years. Other Filipinos involved in boxing and living in Japan often check in on Arizala.

GAB chairman Abraham Mitra said yesterday preparations are now being made for Arizala’s return. “The second operation was done and we are in the process of choosing the hospital where he will continue his rehab close to his home for convenience,” said Mitra. “Arizala is now ambulatory. We have requested the DBM and Bureau of Treasury for P100,000 sourced from the welfare fund that they hold. It’s really wonderful news that he’s recovering. Sadly, the welfare fund is the only source from GAB to assist him but we are trying to solicit from other agencies.”

GAB medical section chief Dr. Radentor Viernes is in close coordination with Dr. Nagao to monitor Arizala’s condition. “At the moment, we are confirming where Arizala will be staying when he returns home to facilitate the nearest hospital for his rehab,” said Dr. Viernes. “I’ll be asking for a specific rehab program that we will be endorsing to the hospital here. I saw Arizala in a video forwarded to me, walking with an aid of a walker. And the medical certificate describes well his physical state.”

Penalosa said the therapy will focus on regaining full movement of his left leg and foot. “Hindi na siya makakalaban,” said Penalosa. “Pwede siguro siya mag-trainer sa gym. Kahapon lang, binalitaan ako na nakakalakad na siya mag-isa na walang walker. On the way to recovery na siya pero kailangan lang therapy.”

Monis said he is in contact with Japanese matchmaker Takashi Aoshima and officials of the Japan Professional Boxing Association (JPBA). “Magaling ang doctor nila,” said Monis. “Kapag di na-operahan kaagad si Arizala, baka namatay. Mabuti na lang, kasama namin ang asawa ni Jonathan na siya nag-pilit na operahan kaagad. Hanggang makalabas, ang gastos ay aabutin ng mga $50,000. Ang balak ng JPBA ay ihatid si Arizala sa Manila at makipagugnayan kay chairman Mitra.”


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