Jerwin says Thai easy target
If and when IBF superflyweight champion Jerwin Ancajas faces WBC counterpart Srisaket Sor Rungvisai in a unification title showdown, the Filipino said yesterday it won’t be difficult to connect because the plodding Thai is slow, making for an easy target.
Ancajas, trainer Joven Jimenez, matchmaker Sean Gibbons and Gibbons’ son Brendan were at ringside in Bangkok last weekend to watch Rungvisai’s defense against Mexican Iran Diaz. After Rungvisai was declared the winner by unanimous decision, Ancajas entered the ring to congratulate the Thai and slung the IBF belt on his shoulder. Rungvisai looked Ancajas in the eye but didn’t say a word.
Gibbons said he has initiated talks with Rungvisai’s manager Thanchai Pisitwuttinan on the possibility of a duel between the southpaws in the US in February. The WBC has delayed Rungvisai’s mandatory fight against Mexico’s Juan Francisco Estrada to allow for one more voluntary defense, paving the way for the championship unification. The WBC’s condition, however, is after the next voluntary defense, the winner must face Estrada.
Gibbons said he will try to arrange a fight for Estrada in the undercard. That means working it out with Top Rank which promotes Ancajas and Zanfer, the Mexican company that represents Estrada. The superflyweight division has IBF superflyweight
champion Jerwin Ancajas (third from left) with trainer Joven Jimenez,
matchmaker Sean Gibbons and Gibbons’ son
Brendan. been gaining media mileage lately with the emergence of exciting contenders to challenge the champions. A main event featuring Ancajas against Rungvisai with Estrada in the undercard is a potential blockbuster.
Jimenez said during his Bangkok visit, Ancajas was invited by Thai promoter Jimmy Chaichatchuang to share his story with Thai fighters under his care. Chaichatchuang asked Ancajas to relate how discipline, hard work and dedication led him to a world title. The Thai promoter wanted Ancajas to inspire the fighters who were disappointed with the downturn in former IBF flyweight champion Amnat Ruenroeng’s career. Amnat, a Chaichatchuang protégé, represented Thailand at the 2008 Olympics, turned pro, became a world champion, returned to the 2016 Olympics and has taken to the bottle with his career at an ebb.
Ancajas said he was impressed by Rungvisai’s power but not his mobility. “Malakas siya pero mabagal at madaling tamaan kasi sugod ng sugod,” he said. “Dalawang beses siya bumagsak kay Diaz. Yung referee (Jay Nady) hindi siya binilangan at slip daw. Nakita ko sapol yung right uppercut noong unang bagsak at sa pangalawa, tumama right straight. Matapang si Rungvisai. Nagpapasuntok para lang makalapit at makabigay. Walang masyadong footwork. Magandang laban kung kami na. Hindi siya aatras. Sasabayan ko siya kanya matira ang matibay.”
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