This 22-year-old boxer from Bukidnon province is off to a terrific start. And not only he has been winning, Melvin “Gringo” Jerusalem has been beating one opponent after another with authority as seven of his victories came by way of stoppages.
But despite the early success, the ALA Boxing Gym stalwart admits he still has some doubters and turning them into believers will be one of his motivations when he battles the WBC minimumweight champion Wanheng Menayothin on January 25 in Thailand.
Jerusalem and his trainers, Michael Domingo and Edito Villamor, left for Thailand yesterday for the world title fight.
Jerusalem admitted he’s been reading unfavorable comments in social media, saying that the rising fighter isn’t ready for a world title fight yet.
“I don’t mind them because all they know is to criticize. They judge the things they only see. They don’t see the sacrifices, the trainings and the dedication I gave for this fight. All I do is train hard and keep my faith in God strong that I will become a world champion,” Jerusalem said in an interview at the Seaside Saloon of the Social in SM Seaside City Cebu last Thursday night.
In his young career, Jerusalem has scored impressive victories, beating the likes of former world champion Florante Condes and WBC International light flyweight champion Jonathan Refugio.
“I was very happy when I got the offer to fight for a world title because I know I am ready for this kind of fights. I proved this last year when I defeated Condes and Refugio. Those were my confident booster so I am ready for it,” added Jerusalem.
Jerusalem revealed he started training a week after he defeated Indonesian Fabio Marfa last November.
Domingo and Villamor were confident that Jerusalem will emerge victorious.
Menayothin sports a menacing 44W-0L-0D-17KOs record.
But for Villamor, the Thailander only looks good on paper and isn’t ready to face an opponent like Jerusalem.
“He’s flat-footed and he usually waits for his opponent to come in but Melvin is not like that. Melvin likes to circle around his opponent and throws combinations in different angles and I think Melvin has all of the ability to defeat the Thai champion,” said Villamor.
Fully aware that fighting abroad is prone to hometown decision, Jerusalem admitted that the only way to bring home the world title belt is to knock out his opponent.
“I can knock him out. I’ll be patient and when the right timing comes, I will go for it. I have to knock him out because I can’t win against him if the fight goes for 12 rounds,” added Jerusalem.
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