Pinoy fighter Harmonito Dela Torre will open for Pacquiao - Rios in Macao
By Rich Mazon
Thu, 21 Nov 2013
Macao, China - A budding Filipino boxer will commence the biggest sporting event this side of the world this Sunday (Saturday in North America) at The Cotai Arena inside the massive Venetian Resort Hotel and Casino here in Macao.
Harmonito Dela Torre, an undefeated Super Featherweight from General Santos City in the Philippines, will open for his countryman, Filipino superstar Manny Pacquiao who will be facing Mexican - American Brandon Rios in the main event of this weekend's mega boxing event.
The young 10-0 fighter, who is still in his teens, will battle Jason Butar-Butar (15-11-1, 11 KOs) of Jakarta, Indonesia in a 6 round contest that will serve as the first bout of the day from this bustling peninsula.
The 19 year-old Dela Torre is thrilled to be a part of this huge boxing card and to be able to fight alongside Pacquiao, who is also his province mate.
"Masaya, first time ko mag-abroad, dito pa sa Macao at kasama ko pa si Sir Manny," Dela Torre told Philboxing.com.
(Happy, this is my first time to go overseas, and it happens to be here in Macao and with Sir Manny.)
Dela Torre trained with Pacquiao and other boxers at The Wildcard Gym in General Santos, the base camp of Pacquiao's preparations for Rios.
A former member of the Philippine boxing national team, Dela Torre learned of his inclusion in the undercard of Pacquiao- Rios only this week but maintained that he has been preparing since September when the Pacquiao camp opened.
"Masaya ako at natuloy talaga, akala namin wala akong kalaban," said the boxer.
(I am happy that I will be fighting, we all thought that I would not have an opponent.)
Upon learning the name of his foe, Dela Torre and his trainer, Renie Gabawa and co-manager Jim Claude Manangquil turned to You Tube to research his opponent.
"Nakita ko kanina, kaya ko pero wag lang masyadong kumpiyansa."
(I watched him earlier, I can take him but I don't want to be over-confident.)
His trainer expressed the same sentiment of his fighter and verbalized that his fighter can match his Indonesian foe.
"Kaya." (He can take him.) stated Gabawa who expressed that his fighter is well-conditioned to fight.
"Okay na ang kondisyon, ready na." (His conditioning is okay, he is ready.)
In preparation for a very early bout, Dela Torre and Butar- Butar is expected to exchange leather at 8 AM local time, fighter and trainer did most of their sparring and gym work in the morning in General Santos and here at a makeshift gym in one of the function rooms of The Venetian Hotel.
Dela Torre who is the eldest of nine children, is looking forward to make the most of his appearance in this huge event. His family from the Philippines is equally excited and all of them will be watching his fight this Sunday.
"Masaya sila at first time ko mag-abroad, lahat sila manonood, magsasama sila at manonood sila ng live-streaming ng laban ko."
(They are happy because it was my first time to go abroad, they will all be watching, they will all get together to watch my fight through live-streaming.)
He admitted that he is fascinated by the sights and sounds that Macao has to offer, he is seen strolling around the huge Venetian complex with his team after spending time in the gym.
"Andami kong nakikitang bago." (I am seeing a lot of new things.) he said but affirmed that his main focus for this trip is to put a good fight against his opponent.
Macao is proving to be quite an experience for the young fighter, and a "W" this Sunday will make it a memorable one.
You can reach the author at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @Freemazon910.
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