Two Filipino boxers, one of them from Bacolod City, triumphed in their respective bouts against Mexican foes at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada, yesterday (Philippine time)
Nonito “the Filipino Flash, Donaire grabbed the World Boxing Council and World Boxing Organization bantamweight crowns from Fernando Montiel when he won via technical knockout in the second round of their fight (story on page 21).
Bacoleño welterweight boxer "Mighty" Mark Jason Melliguen, meanwhile, defeated Mexican Gabriel Martinez in a unanimous decision in their non-title undercard clash with the score of 99-91, 99-91, 98-92.
With Melliguen’s triumph against Martinez, he has improved his record with 22 wins, 14 knock outs and 2 losses, while Martinez now has a record of 27 wins, 2 losses and 14 knock outs.
Watching from their home in Purok Akasya, Brgy. Pahanocoy, Bacolod, the family of Melliguen yesterday cheered as he delivered his punches against Martinez in every round.
Janine, 18, Melliguen’s younger sister, said they were expecting her brother’s win, being an experienced boxer. She said her brother started boxing when he was only five year old and was mentored by their father, Gerardo, a former local boxer himself.
Mark Jason used to be with the Philippine team and was able to play for the Sea Games. His other brothers Mark Gil and Mark John Ray are also into boxing and were trained by their father as well, she also said.
In preparing for the fight against Martinez, Melliguen trained in Las Vegas from the first week of January.
Janine told the DAILY STAR that boxing promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank promotion has promised her brother that if he wins against Martinez, his next fight will be a title bout.
Sheila Moralida, Melliguen’s wife, said she had no doubt that her husband would win the fight although his Mexican foe is taller and bigger, as she has trust and confidence in his skills.
Moralida said they preparing a huge victory party for her husband when he arrives.
Mayor Evelio Leonardia, who had earlier asked Bacoleños and Negrenses to pray for Melliguen’s success, assured the boxer that he and the rest of the city officials are behind his future quests.
Leonardia said Melliguen’s victory over Martinez is something that Bacoleños could be proud of.*APN