Pinoy Pride 22 protagonists exchange fearless forecasts
All four main event fighters promise KO victory this SaturdayBy Dale G. Rosal
Cebu Daily News
WBO Asia Pacific Super Bantamweight champion Genesis “Azukal” Servania has more heart compared to AJ “Bazooka” Banal, that’s why their trainer, Edito Villamor is confident the former will win against former WBA super flyweight champion Rafael “El Torito” Concepcion of Panama (18-6-1, 8KOs) when they tangle this Saturday in the main event of Pinoy Pride XXII: The Revenge at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino.
Villamor made this assessment yesterday during the card’s final presscon at the Agean Room of Waterfront Hotel.
For Villamor, Banal (29-2-1, 21KOs) and Servania (22-0, 8KOs) are unarguably talented boxers but when it comes to will and heart, the Bacolod City native stands out.
Servania and the cocky Concepcion will fight for the WBO Intercontinental Super Bantamweight title.
Villamor said he is basing his evaluation on Banal’s two crucial losses: to Concepcion in 2008 at the Cebu Coliseum where the latter snatched the WBA superflyweight title via 10th round knock-out and to Thai Pongluang Sor Singyu in Manila last year for the WBO Bantamweight title via ninth round TKO.
Villamor said he saw Servania’s huge heart when the latter stood up after being knocked down twice against the hard hitting Japanese Konosuke Tomiyama (23-5-1, 8 KOs) in Macao last July and went on to win by technical decision.
“I’ve worked hard for this bout and I’m not scared of him (Concepcion)” said Servania who was joined by fellow ALA Boxing Gym stalwart “King” Arthur Villanueva (23-0, 13KOs), ALA Promotions General Manager and Vice President Dennis Cañete and WBO supervisor Jack Daniel Leigh.
Concepcion was also present along with his handler Carlos Costa and trainer Rigoberto Garibaldi, Mexican Edgar “Chololo” Martinez (16-7,10KOs) with trainer Franco Gabaldon Herrera and the undercard boxers.
Yesterday’s first meeting of the two protagonists was wrought with stinging remarks.
“ He will eat his words,” said Servania in reference to Concepcion’s promise to send him to dreamland.
“He will be the one who will be sleeping with the pillow he brought for me because I”m going to knock him out. He brought me a pillow, I’ll give him a blanket because I’ll knock him out cold on the canvas,” Servania added.
Concepcion for his part said he will finish off Servania early so that he can sleep tight while lying on the canvas. “I’ve fought some of the biggest names in boxing and that will be my edge over Servania. His level is lower compared to who I have fought, he is not a top-caliber boxer compared to my opponents like Jorge Arce, Fernando Montiel and Nonito Donaire,” declared the cocky Panamanian.
He even said that he will knock Servania out early because he does not want the latter to suffer.
Meanwhile, Villanueva and Martinez also engaged in a heated exchange. They will meet in a 12-round duel for the WBO International Super flyweight title in the co-main event.
“I’ve survived the 7.2 magnitude earthquake here in Cebu. The question is, will he survive the earthquake-like punches that will hit him?” Villanueva said.
Martinez retaliated by saying that he will rock the Pacific Grand Ball Room of the Waterfront with his own brand of earthquake.
“Just like what I have promised, my punch will be the last thing Villanueva will see before he gets knocked out,” Martinez said.
Spearheading the undercard are Roli ‘Zuma’ Gasca (20-4-1; 5 KOs) vs. Indonesian Lande Olin (11-4); Mark Vincent “Machete” Bernaldez (11-0; 7 KOs) vs. Khunkiri Wor Wisaruth (10-5-1) of Thailand; Boholano Jessel Mark ‘Magnifico’ Magsayo (3-0, 2 KOs) vs. Hagibis Quinones (3-10-1) of General Santos City.
The card’s official weigh-in will be held today at the Ayala Center Cebu’s Active Zone.