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An Insight on Juanma Lopez Versus Bernabe Concepcion


PhilBoxing.com


I?m glad that these are busy times for Philippine boxing and our boxers are getting a lot more of the attention they deserve. Barely a month after Rodel Mayol lost his title by unanimous decision, a new local hero was born when an unknown fighter Dapudong, coming from a poor and battle stricken region, the son of a farmer, showed up with nothing but high hopes and dreams backed up with good old hard working attitude to knock out world number one flyweight Jesus Jimenez in Mexico.

Albeit, quite expectedly, also came the news that Mark Melligen had won his Welterweight battle few days ago against Adjaho while Condes Nietes prepares to defend his WBO minimum weight crown on August. The fight schedules just keep on coming. Long gone are the days when most Pinoy fighters were treated with disregard. With Manny Pacquiao trailblazing the long and uphill path to success Filipino boxers have achieved something altogether: Self Belief.

The talk of the boxing town right now is the interesting match between Juanma Lopez against Bernabe Concepcion. With the love for boxing both countries have and it?s boiling rivalry, my question is, with pride and passion aside, what are Concepcion?s real chances of pulling this off against the undefeated Juanma? A boxer mostly known to the Filipino fight fans as the guy who made the legendary Gerry Penalosa quit on his stool, which in itself speaks volumes of his capabilities. What makes Concepcion think he can win this one, or does he see a hole in his opponent?s style for him to take this fight? I wonder if self-belief would be enough to pull this one off.

First of all, I don?t think Concepcion is a fighter who sticks to his game plan in the long run. As a fight wears on he has the tendency to deviate and fight his own style, almost always looking for a brawl. This is the sport of boxing, not a street fight, and game plans are very vital. I?ve seen him fight against Luevano and quite glaringly we all witnessed impatience took over his game - which by the way, in spite of his natural attributes being supposedly stronger and faster, even with the advantage of an impressive physique against the lanky Luevano, all that never seemed to have been synthesized effectively to work for him that night. You cannot be impatient in a boxing match. This sport is a battle of intelligence and smarts as much as it is physical, although the latter could be a big plus. And I hear Concepcion is not known for his discipline in training.

To win against the taller Juanma, a fighter who can brawl as well as be a rangy boxer due to his reach advantage, Concepcion will have to keep it up with his footwork, moving in and out, employing side to side movements for him to set up traps and shoot at unexpected angles. Lopez is quite a hittable guy and I think Gerry Penalosa has exposed that quite well and this is an aspect that has to be taken advantage of. The problem I see with Bernabe is that he seems to lose that agility as the fight goes on. He has a strong tendency to become flat footed during the middle of the game. If he does this against the heavy handed Juanma this fight is over.

He needs to follow through with his game to score an upset, which is hard to imagine at this point considering what we know of his work ethics and his past fights, especially the last one where He almost lost what was supposedly a lopsided match because he was close to running out of steam that raises questions as to his preparation for the fight.

I understand the excitement. Yet underneath the flurry, from an objective point of view, I don?t see Concepcion winning this one; not by a long shot. But I hope he wins.

* * *

Read more of Mark F. Villanueva at boxinginsight.blogspot.com

Mark currently lives in Iloilo City and can be followed through http://twitter.com/markfvillanueva



Click here to view a list of other articles written by Mark F. Villanueva.


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