Gabunilas ready for the Inoue-Tapales undercard bout

By: Glendale G. Rosal - CDN Digital Correspondent | December 21,2023 - 08:51 PM


John Paul Gabunilas flexed his ripped physique as proof of his hard training for his December 26 bout in Tokyo, Japan. | Contributed photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebuano boxing prospect John Paul “Angas ng Cebu” Gabunilas didn’t leave a stone unturned in preparing for his first fight abroad.

Gabunilas, from the ARQ Boxing Stable in Cebu, has been training since September to prepare for his first bout in Japan against the unbeaten hometown foe Kanamu Sakama.

This won’t be an ordinary fight abroad. Gabunilas and Sakama will square off in the undercard of Naoya Inoue and Marlon Tapales’s world title unification bout on December 26, 2023, at the Ariake Arena in Tokyo, Japan.

For the 23-year-old Gabunilas, he is a hundred percent prepared to face Sakama.

“Taas-taas gyud akong training ani, sukad pa pag tunga-tunga sa September hangtod karon. First time ni nako moduwa sa gawas sa nasud mao nang grabe akong pagpangandam. Karon 100% nako nga ready,” Gabunilas told CDN Digital.

Gabunilas, who boasts 10 wins with two losses and seven knockouts, admitted that he has already moved on but not forgotten his devastating first-round knockout loss to Miel Fajardo last August in Lapu-Lapu City.

According to Gabunilas, defeat will be his main motivation to bounce back.

“Kadto, nadawat na nako ang nahitabo kay dili na mabalik, wala ko nagdumot pero wala ko nakalimot, nahimo nato nga inspiration maningkamot para ma improve akong kuwang sa akong boxing skills,” added Gabunilas.

Gabunilas is one of ARQ Boxing Stable’s banner boxers, having held the former WBO Asia Pacific Youth light flyweight and the former OPBF Youth light flyweight champion titles.

“Target ni nako nga duwa, paningkamotan ni nako, pamawi gyud ni, magpakitang gilas gyud ni kay daghan kaayo mo tan-aw. Wala ra ko na pressure ug nakulbaan,” added Gabunilas.

When asked if he could knock out Sakama, Gabunilas said it depends on his luck, but he predicted that the bout wouldn’t go the distance.

“Depende kung makatsamba, pero na jud chance makatumba, pero dili ta mokumpyansa, hometown ra ba nila ug manager pud sa kontra nagpaduwa,” he added.

Since this is his first time fighting abroad, Gabunilas can’t help but feel a bit sad about being separated from his family, especially during the holiday season.

“Nag guol ko gamay kay atong pamilya mahabilin pero opportunity ni atong dawaton,” Gabunilas concluded.

He and his trainers, Eldo Cortes and Roger Justine Potot, will leave for Tokyo on Saturday, December 23, 2023.


Gabunilas to fight in undercard of Inoue-Tapales world title unification bout in December

Marlon Tapales feels ‘no fear’ against Naoya Inoue

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TAGS: boxing, John Paul Gabunilas, Marlon Tapales, Naoya Inoue, Tokyo

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