If there is one thing I love about Filipino boxing aside from Filipino heavyweights Pacquiao, Elorde, Velasco, Donaire, and other world-class fighters, it would be the viewers, the ordinary Juan.
An ordinary Juan watching the fight on his humble TV set can turn into an instant boxing analyst. After each fight, one can easily discuss how the fight went through or what a fighter should have done to knock the enemy out. An ordinary Juan does not need to be a Ronnie Nathanielsz, Ed Tolentino, Dyan Castillejo, or a Chino Trinidad to give a well-delivered analysis on the fight. Being a boxing aficionado nation, we are expert on that.
But one does not need to be a huge boxing fan to conclude yesterday’s much-anticipated Donaire-Narvaez fight is nothing but a boring show.
It was so boring I just decided to watch the fight of our Cebuano fighters televised on the rival network. And they proved to be more exciting and action-filled compared to this well-promoted match. So much for the hype.
Donaire is dubbed as an heir-apparent to Manny Pacquiao (though Bob Arum refuted that). Narvaez has a clean record and is undefeated. So I thought it will be an interesting punch fest.
But the challenger Omar Narvaez did a Joshua Clottey by just keeping his defensive stance and throwing an average 24 punches per round (An average bantamweight fighter throws 60 punches per round, according to ESPN’s Michael Woods) much to the disappointment of the Filipino Flash.
And the thousands of boxing fans who watched the fight at the Madison Square Gardenin New York. The crowd went wild in frustration and shouted “This is bullshit! This is bullshit!” and some of them left the theater even after the winner was declared.
Ryan Songolia of the Boxing Writers Asscoiation of America said that Donaire must have felt the pressure to perform an impressive fight having a good record of knockouts from his previous fight. On the other hand, Narvaez came only to survive and knowing that the Filipino Flash may knock him out.
But as in all boxing matches, win or lose, you still have the purse. And Narvaez may have survived the wrath of Donaire but the latter has stained his clean record. And we must still celebrate the victory of our Kababayan. this is another honor for our country.
Congratulations Nonito! See you on your next fight!
And I hope the upcoming Pacquiao-Marquez fight will be a good one and not just for “survival for the purse”.
Mabuhay ang mga Pilipinong boksingero!
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