By: Ronnie Nathanielz –
Ricky Vargas, the president of the Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines or ABAP, was impressed with the performance of World Boxing Organization minimum weight champion Merlito “Tiger” Sabillo in his successful first title defense against Colombia’s No. 6 world-ranked contender Jorlie Estrada during the Pinoy Pride XXI at the Solaire Resort and Casino last Saturday.
Vargas, who watched the ABS-CBN telecast of the fights on Sunday told the Manila Standard he liked the aggressive stance of Sabillo as he “kept chasing his opponent, who was scared and kept running.”
Vargas said the crunching left hook to the ribs that dropped Estrada, who went down grimacing in pain and was counted out by referee Raul Caiz Jr. in the 9th round was “a perfect punch. It was devastating.”
Vargas believes Sabillo has a good future in the pro ranks.
The WBO champion is likely to defend his title in Dubai this October if ALA Promotions is unable to schedule a title defense for WBO light flyweight champion Donnie Nietes in Dubai in September.
ALA Promotions president Michael Aldeguer told us the priority is Nietes.
“He needs to fight. We are trying to move heaven and earth to get a fight in Dubai, but if it can’t be done in September, we’ll have to do it here, possibly in Davao City where the last Pinoy Pride XX was very well received,” he said.
Aldeguer also said he, too, was impressed with the showing of Sabillo, who made a fight out of it against a back-pedaling Estrada. Sabillo cut the ring off well and scored with vicious body shots before eventually knocking out Estrada.