FRESNO, California — Two former world champions see contrasting outcome when Jerwin Ancajas and Jonas Sultan square off in an all-Pinoy battle for the International Boxing Federation super-flyweight crown.
Rodel Mayol sees the reigning champion Ancajas as too experienced against his challenger, while Donnie Nietes likes the chances of Sultan in pulling off an upset at the Save Mart Center here on Saturday.
Mayol, now a trainer, once reigned as World Boxing Council light-flyweight champion, while Nietes is a three-time world title holder and considered the longest reigning Filipino champion of all-time.
“Sultan wants to prove himself that he could be a champion, that’s why I think he will go for a knockout against Jerwin which makes this a very good fight,” observed Mayol.
“But Jerwin is too experienced for him.”
Nietes is more conservative lest he be faulted for being biased, the 26-year-old Sultan being a stablemate of him at ALA Promotions.
“Fifty-fifty,” quipped the 36-year-old Nietes when asked of his thoughts of the historic fight – a first Filipino versus Filipino title showdown in the last 93 years.
“Alam naman natin parehong fighters nangangarap na maging champion,” added the native of Murcia, Negros Occidental, who himself will be vying for the vacant World Boxing Organization super-flyweight championship against Aston Palicte this August. “Sa akin paunahan na lang ito sa itaas ng ring kasi pareho naman silang magaling.”
Mayol was more vocal.
He said for Sultan to really make a difference, he needs to turn the 12-round bout into a slugfest.
“He has to put more pressure and make Jerwin Ancajas move backward and go for the kill,” said the 36-year-old Mayol from Mandaue, Cebu. “That is his only chance to go for the kill.”
Mayol, who had a career record of 31-5-2, with 22 KOs before hanging up his gloves, also believes Jamie Conlan and Teiru Kinoshita were far more dangerous Ancajas opponents than Sultan.
But that does not mean he’s underestimating the ability of the challenger from Tampilisan, Zamboanga del Norte.
“Sultan is a good fighter and he’s young, but I just see Ancajas as just too experienced for him,” added the trainer of Filipino boxer John Moralde.