f.rodriguez.150708.02.330w  By:  Rene Bonsubre, Jr. –

CEBU CITY- Mexican challenger Francisco “Chihuas” Rodriguez is back in Cebu and he did not mince words when asked about the defending champion Donnie “Ahas” Nietes.
“I had a bad experience the first time I was here. But now I am back, better and well prepared. I plan to knock him (Nietes) out,” This was Rodriguez’s initial salvo during the press conference held Wednesday afternoon at the Rajah Park Hotel. Rodriguez (17-2-1,11KO’s) referred to his fight last November when he engaged Jomar Fajardo to a split draw at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel. He had to face Fajardo two months later in Mexico and handily won a unanimous decision.

“I was not one hundred percent the first time I was here, What happened, happened. The second fight I was very prepared,” Rodriguez emphasized. “To be a champion, you have to go to the house of the champion.”

“Nietes can say what he wants, I will say what I want,” this was Rodriguez’s response to the champion’s statement that he did not believe that the Mexican suffered an ankle injury in training and that he will knock out Rodriguez.

“We will see on Saturday,” Rodriguez speaking through interpreter Mon Escano, talked about his dream of challenging the longest reigning Filipino world titlist,“I have waited for more than a year to fight Nietes. I was not ranked very high back then.”

When asked for his fight plan, he replied “A better question would be – How Nietes will protect himself? I will come and attack him!”

Trainer Jose Antonio Hernandez said that Nietes is very good, very strong but he is already 33 years old, which they cite as a weakness.

Rodriguez has already acclimatized, having been in the country for more than a week and training at the Elorde gym in Manila.

Nietes (35W-1L-4D,21KO’s) will be defending his WBO world junior flyweight and Ring magazine titles against the former unified WBO/IBF minimumweight champ this Saturday July 11 at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino in the main event of PINOY PRIDE 31.

Mark “Magnifico” Magsayo (10-0,8KO’s) will be gunning for the IBF Youth featherweight title in the supporting main event against Rafael Reyes (16-4,12KO’s) of Mexico.

Reyes said that he has seen films of Magsayo, who he describes as a complicated fighter. The Mexican said he came here to win and we’ll see once the fight progresses. His trainer Edmundo Gaytan said they are also eyeing Albert Pagara, who they want to face if they beat Magsayo.

A special attraction on PINOY PRIDE 31 will be the debut of multi-awarded amateur Kevin Jake Cataraja, who will be fighting a foreigner in his first professional outing. Cataraja will be pitted against Indonesian Ardi Tefa (6-4,4KO’s) in a six rounder.




By:  Lemuel P. Maglinte –

CEBU, Philippines – Unbeaten Japanese world title challenger Tomoki ‘Mexicanito’ Kameda is raring to showcase his skills in front of Cebuano fans, even as he expessed confidence of seizing the WBO bantamweight crown from Namibian champion Paulos Ambunda when they slug it out in the  main event of ‘Battle of the Undefeated’  fightcard on August 1 at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino.

Since Kameda is not the mandatory challenger, the Japan Boxing Commission won’t let him fight for the belt in his own country.

Still, the Japanese boxer feels that he has hometown advantage fighting on Philippine soil.

“I will do my best so that Filipino fans will enjoy this fight. I want to showcase my skills in front of them and I can say that I have a very big chance of beating him (Ambunda) to get that belt,” said Tomoki, the youngest of the three fighting Kameda brothers of Japan.“I would love to make my own name here in the Philippines just like I did when I was fighting in Mexico where I get my ring name Mexicanito.”

Tomoki,  who also holds the WBC Silver bantamweight belt, vows to follow in the steps of his elder brothers Koki, the reigning WBA bantamweight champion, and Daiki, the former WBA flyweight titlist.

“This is something unique because this is the first time that a world title fight featuring foreign boxers will happen here in Cebu and we Cebuanos should be proud,” said Cebuano promoter Rex “Wakee” Salud.



CEBU CITY – The adversaries for the 20th edition of the ‘Pinoy Pride’ series had their final round of sabre rattling today during the final press conference held at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel. Jason “El Niño” Pagara (30-2, 19KO’s) of the ALA Gym, who will defend his WBO International light welterweight title against Mexico’s Aaron “La Hoya” Herrera (25-1, 17 KO’s) said that the Mexican challenger’s style is easy to solve.

“Simpol ra kaayo ni siya pildihon.” Pagara said when asked to comment about Herrera’s fight videos. “I will not promise anything but you will see a knockout.”

Herrera for his part said that he is 200 percent prepared. “I will beat Pagara because this is the first time that he will face a good fighter.”

Trainer Edmund Villamor said that Pagara is in better shape even compared to his condiitoning during the Rosbel Montoya rematch. This will be the second time that Pagara will headline a Pinoy Pride card. They will trade punches this Saturday inside the Pacific Ballroom of the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino. 

Jimrex “Executioner” Jaca (37-6-3, 21 KO’s) will go for the vacant WBO Oriental lt.welterweight title and a world ranking when he fights with Mexico’s Jose Emilio Perea (29-2, 20KO’s). 

Jaca, who is known for his gallant loss against Juan Manuel Marquez, said that he is in better shape now and is only a pound over 140.

WBO VP for Asia Pacific Leon Panoncillo emphasized the importance of the International and regional belts and said that many world champions of the World Boxing Organization were once holders of the International title.

Jaca, who is trained by Franklin Albia, looks forward to the opportunity to face Marquez again.

Undefeated Genesis “Azukal” Servania (19-0, 7 KO’s) will face Isaac Junior of Indonesia (20-3-2, 8 KO’s)in a ten round non-title contest.  Servania is in a must situation because he is already penned for a fight in Macau this July.


A special feature in this card will be the pro debut of Jessel Magsayo of the ALA Gym, who will face Melton Sandal of Zamboanga del Norte in a four rounder. Magsayo is a former amateur standout and caught the attention of Philboxing editor Dong Secuya, who together with this writer, watched him spar against Servania.

Magsayo, who hails from Tagbilaran City, was already spotted by this writer three years ago when he represented the BTC Boxing Club and was chosen as the Best Boxer of the Tournament during the amateur finals of the Mayor Jonas Cortes Cup in Mandaue City.

Also set to see action are Ralph Lulu vs Junnie Salogaol (8 rounds), Roland Servania vs Andrew Palas (4 rounds), Elmo Traya vs Jonie Villacrusis (4 rounds), Richard Barrios vs Lauro Balweg (4 rounds) and Kazuma Ejiri of Japan vs Jonas Sultan (4 rounds).

ALA Promotions VP Dennis Cañete thanked the media together with WBO VP Leon Panoncillo and ABS-CBN for their support.The Pinoy Pride series has shot to double digit ratings nationwide. The last Pinoy Pride event in Davao City, which saw Rey Bautista losing to Jose Ramirez of Mexico, registered 30.4 percent in rural Mindanao and a 17 percent national rating.

The official weigh-in for Pinoy Pride XX: Laban kung Laban will be on noontime Friday May 24 at SM Cebu Events Centre.