'Tiger' vows to regain title

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Tuesday, August 5, 2014


HIS heartbreaking loss to Mexican Francisco Rodriguez Jr. in a World Boxing Organization (WBO) title bout made former minimumweight champion Merlito “Tiger” Sabillo (23-1-1) vow to make a comeback and begin his journey to regain his throne.

Sabillo got his first taste of defeat in the 10th round against Mexican Rodriguez in their titler clash at the Arena Monterrey in Nuevo León, Mexico.

Dennis Cañete, ALA Promotions vice president and general manager, said last weekend they are working out Sabillo’s possible comeback fight late this year.

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“Merlito is definitely returning this year, but we are still finalizing the details of his fight,” Cañete said.

The 30-year-old Toboso-born and Bacolod City-raised fighter is currently in tough preparation at the ALA gym in Cebu.
“I’m very thankful for those who continue to pray and support me. I apologize to my supporters, to my family, and to everyone who believed in me as I failed to defend my title,” Sabillo added.

Now in high spirits, Sabillo said, “I will rise again and regain my title. I will train harder and be stronger when I return. I really felt bad about that loss and it’s quite painful but everything has always a reason and God knows it," he concluded.

Meanwhile, Bacolod City-hailed and undefeated champions Genesis “Azukal” Servania and Bago City-born “King” Arthur Villanueva are all set to fly to Dubai for the “Pinoy Pride 27: Duel in Dubai” set September 5 at the Dubai International Convention Center.

Both Filipino champions are expected to fly to Dubai two weeks before the scheduled fight.

Servania (24-0, 10KOs), the reigning World Boxing Organization (WBO) Inter-continental super bantamweight champion and WBO Asia Pacific “Fighter of the Year” will defend his belt against former two-time world title challenger Jose “Matador” Cabrera (22-4, 10KOs) of Mexico in the main event.

Defending WBO International super flyweight champion Villanueva (25-0, 14KOs) will clash with Nicaraguan Henry “El Crespo” Maldonado (18-3, 13KOs) for the International Boxing Federation (IBF) International junior bantamweight title.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on August 05, 2014.

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