WORLD Boxing Organization mini-flyweight champion Donnie Nietes is aiming for history this Sunday in his fourth world title defense against Mexican Mario Rodriguez at the Auditorio Luis Estrada Medina in Guasave, Sinaloa, Mexico.
Should the 28-year-old former janitor from the ALA Gym win over Rodriguez, he will be the only Filipino boxer to win three world title fights in Mexico against a Mexican.
“This is the biggest fight of his career because of the stakes. This Sunday, Donnie will try and make history for Philippine boxing,” said ALA Promotions president Michael Aldeguer.
Aside from that, he will also surpass Ben Villaflor as the fourth longest-reigning Filipino world champion behind Pancho Villa at third, Jesus Salud at second and Gabriel “Flash” Elorde, who is No.1 with a seven-year and three month-reign.
However, achieving this impressive feat won’t be easy for Nietes. Although his 21-year-old challenger has a mediocre record with 10 wins, five losses and three draws with seven knockouts, Aldeguer believes Ramirez will be a handful for his ward.
“His record doesn’t speak for itself,” said Aldeguer, who believes that Rodriguez’s record posted at boxrec.com may not be correct. “Erik Morales (the promoter of the event) won’t pay millions if he doesn’t believe in his fighter.”
Aldeguer has seen tapes of Rodriguez and said the Mexican, who is ranked 10th in the WBO, is a typical Mexican fighter who comes in and has punching power.
“Donnie must focus on the fight because it won’t be easy. Going to the scorecards would be very difficult. He must dominate every round and if he sees the opportunity, he must go for the kill,” said Aldeguer.
Lately, Filipino fighters have been losing in world title bouts in Mexico but Nietes wants to turn the tide around with a win over Rodriguez.
“Donnie wants to prove the Filipinos are back and that we are here,” said Aldeguer.