The year in Philippine boxingBy Rene Bonsubre Jr.
It was a year of tragedy and triumph, controversy and catastrophe. Boxing as a brand continued to generate public interest with a subsequent rise in television ratings. Manny Pacquiao remained the biggest newsmaker for actions in and out of the ring. But other boxers started to emerge from his long shadow.
February 4 – Nonito Donaire defeated Wilfredo Vasquez Jr to annex the vacant WBO super bantamweight title in San Antonio, Texas for the ‘Filipino Flash’ fourth title in four weight classes.
February 10 – Ring riot in Argentina. Johnriel Casimero’s 10th round TKO win over Luis Alberto Lazarte for the IBF interim lt.flyweight title in Mar de Plata, Argentina triggered a post-fight riot. News of the incident reached the halls of the Philippine Senate and the Dept. of Foreign Affairs.
March 2 – What an upset! Sonny Boy Jaro captured the WBC world flyweight and Ring magazine linear title with a stunning upset 6th round TKO over Pongsaklek Wonjongkam in Chonburi, Thailand. Pongsaklek was then ranked No. 8 among the top ten best pound for pound boxers in the world.
March 2 – It was a wrong Genaro Garcia. Mexican boxing agent scams ALA Promotions by sending a hopelessly unskilled boxer with the same name as the scheduled opponent of Rey ‘BoomBoom’ Bautista and ruined a big fight card in Bohol.
March 16 – Ana Julaton loses WBO female super bantamweight title to Yessica Patricia Marcos by unanimous decision in Mendoza, Argentina.
May 13 – Lucky 13 for Viloria. Viloria retained his WBO flyweight belt with a 9th round TKO over Omar Niño Romero at the Ynares Sports Center in Pasig City.
May 20 – Gabuco strikes gold. Josie Gabuco beat by points Xu Shiqi of China to win the Philippines’ first ever gold medal in the World Women’s Amateur Boxing Championship.
June 2 – Ahas shines. Donnie Nietes retained his WBO light flyweight title by unanimous decision against Felipe Saliguero.
June 9 – Bradley won. Really? Timothy Bradley beat Manny Pacquiao by split decision to win the WBO world welterweight title with a highly controversial scoreline.
History will remember the second half of the year for Nonito Donaire’s rise and Manny Pacquiao’s fall. Johnriel Casimero got his recognition as a regular world champion and Brian Viloria engaged Hernan Marquez in a ‘Fight of the Year’ candidate.
July 7 – Nonito Donaire scored a 12-round unanimous win over Jeffrey Mathebula to unify the WBO and IBF world super bantamweight titles in Carson, California.
July 16 – Sonny Boy Jaro loses the WBC flyweight title in Japan by split decision to Toshiyuki Igarashi in Saitama.
July 19 – IBF recognizes Johnriel Casimero as a regular world junior flyweight champion
Aug. 5 – Johnriel Casimero retains his IBF jr.flyweight crown with a split decision win over Pedro Guevara in Mazatlan, Mexico.
Sept. 22 – Rodel Mayol loses to IBF super flyweight champion Juan Carlos Sanchez by 9th round KO in Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico.
Oct. 13 – Nonito Donaire beat Toshiaki Nishioka via 9th round TKO to retain his WBO super bantam title, win the vacant Ring magazine linear title and the WBC Diamond belt.
Oct. 20 – AJ Banal loses to Pungluang Sor Singyu of Thailand by 9th round TKO for the vacant WBO bantamweight world title at the Mall of Asia Arena, Pasay City.
Nov. 10 – Edrin Dapudong failed to annex the vacant IBO superflyweight title after losing via split decision to Gideon Buthelezi in South Africa.
Nov. 17 – Brian Viloria unified the WBO and WBA flyweight titles with a 10th round TKO of Hernan ‘Tyson’ Marquez in Los Angeles.
Dec. 6 – Mexican vendetta. Juan Manuel Marquez knocked Manny Pacquiao out cold in the 6th round in Las Vegas, Nevada. After three close and controversial contests, Marquez finally scored an emphatic win that sent shockwaves throughout the boxing world.
Dec. 15 – Pinoy resbak. Nonito Donaire knocked out Mexican star Jorge Arce in the third round to retain his WBO superbantamweight title in Houston, Texas.
Dec. 26 – WBC plays Grinch. No. 1 ranked strawweight contender Denver Cuello and Promoter Aljoe Jaro seek legal action against the World Boxing Council for stalling Cuello’s title challenge against the WBC 105 lb division champion Xiong Zhao Zhong of China.