Long road to world title

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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

AT ONE point of his career Rey “Boom-Boom” Bautista (33-2, 25 KOs) was considered as the future superstar of Filipino boxing. He was even expected to follow in the footsteps of Manny Pacquiao. But maybe it wasn’t meant to be just yet as everything seemed to be going downhill for him after losing in his bid for a world title against Daniel Ponce de Leon over five years ago.

Following that loss, Bautista’s career was shaky. He suffered a career-threatening hand injury and also the second defeat of his career against Heriberto Ruiz in 2008.

Now, almost entering the peak of his career, the 26-year-old Bautista wants to finally prove that he still has what it takes to become a world champion.


But before Bautista’s world title shot, he has to get past another tough Mexican, Daniel Ruiz, on Oct. 20 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

“I went into boxing and strived to get to where I am now because I hated the impoverished life. I do not want my family to experience that ever again. That is my motivation,” said Bautista .

ALA Promotions is looking at two options for Bautista, who is fighting for the vacant World Boxing Organization (WBO) International featherweight belt. He can challenge for the WBO featherweight title against current holder Orlando Salido or agree to a rematch with de Leon, who was just crowned as the World Boxing Council featherweight champion.

“It depends on Boom-Boom’s progress. Daniel Ruiz is a threat. Yes (fighting de Leon) is his dream. Now that de Leon is a world champion, the more that he wants the rematch,” said ALA Promotions president Michael Aldeguer in a recent press conference.

Bautista is currently rated No. 4 in the International Boxing Federation and No. 11 in the WBO.

The main event features a world title bout between AJ “Bazooka” Banal (28-1-1, 20 KOs) and Pungluang Sor Singyu (42-1, 27 KOs) for the vacant WBO bantamweight strap, while Jason Pagara (29-2, 18 KOs) defends his WBO International light welterweight belt against unbeaten Miguel Antoine (17-0-1, 9 KOs).

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 04, 2012.


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