Villamor prefers for Nietes to train in Cebu for Ioka fight
THE camp of three-division world champion Donnie “Ahas” Nietes prefers that the longest reigning Filipino boxing world champion train in Cebu for his super-fight against fellow three-division world champion Kazuto Ioka of Japan on New Year’s Eve for the vacant World Boxing Organization (WBO) super flyweight title.
According to ALA Promotions International matchmaker and ALA Boxing Gym trainer Edito Villamor, his 36-year-old prized ward has already started training even before ALA Promotions International CEO Michael P. Aldeguer announced that the WBO executive committee has given them a go-signal to initiate the negotiations with Ioka’s camp to finalize the deal for the December 31 bout.
“He started training weeks before the announcement was made,” said Villamor.
“We will have our training camp in Cebu because Macao, China, is just a few hours flight from Cebu and we don’t have to adjust with the climate and time zone for Donnie. The venue is also perfect because it is neutral.”
The bout between Nietes and Ioka was announced last Friday during the recently concluded WBO Annual Convention held in Panama.
The fight will be co-promoted by ALA Promotions International, TLA Rock, Ioka’s manager Taku Nagashima, and renowned international promoter Tom Loeffler, who are all involved in brewing this fight.
Villamor added that they need to train hard for this fight considering that Ioka is a very dangerous opponent.
“We need to prepare for this in all aspects of training especially Donnie’s physical conditioning, mental conditioning, and most of all our game plan that we can take advantage of against Ioka,” said Villamor.
This will be Nietes’ first time to train in Cebu after a year following two of his previous fights which were held in the United States, where he also had his training at the famed Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles, California.
Nietes, a native of Murcia, Negros Occidental, sports a record of 41 wins, 23 knockouts, with one defeat and five draws while the younger Ioka, 29, of Osaka, Japan, has a record of (23-1-0, 13KOs) and has not tasted defeat since 2014.
Nietes, on the other hand, is undefeated since 2005, with three of his fights in that period ending in a draw including his fight against Aston Palicte last September 8 at the Forum in Inglewood, California.
His fight against Palicte was hounded by controversy after one of the judges, Max De Luca, scored the bout even, while the other judge, Robert Hoyle, favored Palicte and Daniel Sandoval, the third judge, favored Nietes.
However, a lot of boxing experts, including Nietes’ camp, believed that Nietes won the bout fair and square.
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