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Lorenzo Villanueva Fights Alejandro Perez Oct. 8

PhilBoxing.com


World Boxing Organization (WBO) Oriental Featherweight champion Lorenzo "Thunderbolt" Villanueva flies to the US next month to take on former WBC-USNBC superbantamweight champion Alejandro Perez of Salinas, California in an 8-round non-title bout in the City of Ontario on Oct. 8.

It will be the first foreign fight for the 23-year-old southpaw from Midsayap, North Cotabato who remains undefeated in 19 professional fights with 17 stoppages and one No Decision.


Perez, 24, is not expected to be an easy opponent. He holds a record of 14 wins, 9 KOs, 2 losses and 1 draw. He lost his last fight by unanimous decision against Rico Ramos for the WBO National Boxing Organization (NAB0) superbantamweight title.

"This will be a very good test for Lorenzo and at the same time, we will be able to give him better exposure and excellent conditioning preparation under Justin Fortune," said former North Cotabato governor Manny Pinol who manages Villanueva and owns the Braveheart Boxing Club.

He said the decision to bring over the 5' 6" tall fighter to the US is part of the plan to improve the boxing skills and techniques of the North Cotabato fighter who has been described by Pinol as "raw."

"Lorenzo needs a lot of fine tuning. Indeed, he is a very difficult fighter to go up against right now because of his natural strength and brave heart but we have to improve his boxing foundation," he said.

"Justin has to give him more muscles and work on his conditioning and nutritional program," he said.

Justin Fortune, who owns the Fortune Gym in Hollywood where Villanueva and the other Braveheart boxers will train while in the US, was the conditioning coach of Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao. He established his own gymnasium also in Hollywood, not far from the popular Wild Card Gym of Freddie Roach.

Pinol said that the fight against Perez, which was arranged by his friend Jose Castillo, former manager of the late Venezuelan fighter Edwin Valero, is expected to be tough but added that Villanueva must start taking difficult fights now to test his skills level in the sport.

"Of course, every boxing manager would like to see his boxer win over easy opponents. But there is a time in the career of these boys when they have to go through the proverbial eye of the needle so that we will be able to determine whether they have what it takes to become world champions," he said.

Villanueva, a shy orphan outside of the ring who was taken in by former Governor Pinol when he was only 14, won the WBO Oriental Featherweight crown by stopping former Asian Games gold medallist and undefeated Eric Canoy in the 10th round July 4 last year.

He has defended the title twice, a 2nd stoppage of Eric Macas on Feb. 14 and a 7th round TKO of former WBC international superbantamweight champion Balweg Bangoyan Aug. 1.


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