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By Maloney L. Samaco

Tue, 10 Feb 2009

Nonito Donaire, Jr. was scheduled to face Mexican Fernando Montiel in a WBO super flyweight championship, but things went sour when Montiel could not make the weight limit anymore. The replacement was announced to be Puerto Rican Jose ?Carita? Lopez (38-7-1) for the world title vacated by Montiel who went on to the bantamweight division.

But again promoter Bob Arum was beaten in booking Lopez to face Donaire as he was already slated to fight Thailand?s Promuansak Posuwan for Montiel?s vacant title. Posuwan is the top contender for the crown and Lopez is the ideal opponent in vying for the title.

Donaire then would not relinquish his IBF and IBO flyweight titles and instead would fight Mexican Eric Ortiz (30-8-2, 19 KOs) for his title defense. Ortiz, 31 years old, lost by an 8th round TKO to Z ?The Dream? Gorres on August 11, 2007 in the Philippines vs. Mexico ?World Cup of Boxing.? Also Ortiz lost by a 6th round TKO to Victor Zaleta on September 29, 2007.

Ortiz lost his WBC light flyweight title when he was knocked out in the first round by Fil-Am Brian Viloria on September 10, 2005. He was also defeated in an IBF light flyweight championship to Ulises Solis on March 25, 2006.

After the much ballyhooed 5th round knockout win over Vic Darchinyan on July 7, 2007, Donaire is headed for greatness and was second to Manny Pacquiao among active Filipino ring warriors in popularity. His impressive victory was awarded Ring Magazine's "Knockout of the Year" and "Upset of the Year.

Donaire called on the other champions in his division for a unification fight, most notably WBC champion Daisuke Naito and WBA champion Takefumi Sakata. However, Japan's boxing commission only recognizes the WBA and WBC as legitimate world titles and does not accept the authenticity of the IBF or the WBO, making impossible for Donaire any unification move.

On December 1, 2007, Donaire defended his title against Luis Maldonado of Mexico by TKO in the 8th round in his first title defense to keep his IBF/IBO flyweight crown. Before the fight, Maldonado was defeated by Darchinyan in the IBF/IBO flyweight title fight by 8th round TKO on June 3, 2006. So Maldonado was a lesser caliber fighter compared to Darchinyan.

Donaire, on November 2, 2008, retained his IBF/IBO flyweight world title via a 6th-round TKO of Moruti Mthalane. The South African was the national flyweight champion and later won the WBC international flyweight championship. But again his level is far from the dominant Mexican or Japanese champions in the flyweight division.

Donaire wants to fight big name boxers. On his gigantic triumph against Darchinyan he said, ?The victory was something I will never forget. It was an amazing experience. But I still have to beat the guys that he beat. I feel like deep inside I can beat them. I think I can beat guys like (Cristian) Mijares and Montiel, I just have to prove it in the ring.?

But his dream of facing quality opponents like Mijares and Montiel still lies in the horizon. Mijares is slated to face undefeated Venezuelan Nehomar Cermeno.

Still everything is not lost for The Filipino Flash. With the right promoter in Bob Arum, he could get quality foes in the future that could usher him to greater heights like his good friend Pacquiao.

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