The next major card from ALA Promotions was announced earlier today, and is set to be a triple header, with the top 3 bouts all being affiliated with the WBO, albeit for a trio of their minor titles.
One of the title bouts will see the once touted Albert Pagara (30-1, 21) defending his WBO Inter-Continental Super Bantamweight title against Ghana's George Krampah (14-3, 12). This really should be a straight forward win for Pagara, given the that visitor has been relative inactive in recent years and was stopped in 2 of his last 3, including stoppage losses to Thabo Sonjica and current world champion Isaac Dogboe. Sadly though it doesn't seem like the step forward that the Filipino deserves given his talent and the promise he has.
A much better looking match up will see KJ Cataraja (8-0, 7) take on Victor Hugo Reyes (9-1-1, 7) in a mouth watering match up for the WBO Youth Super Flyweight title. The unbeaten Cataraja is very highly regarded in Asian boxing circles and he has been tipped for major success since turning professional. Despite being highly regarded he hasn't been matched particularly hard, with this being a notable step up in class. Reyes has been matched relatively easily but has been impressive on the Mexican domestic scene, with a good win last time out against Julio Castillo. This really could be the stand out show on the card.
The third title bout will see the hard hitting Jeo Santisima (16-2, 14) take on Mexican Victor Uriel Lopez (13-6-1, 6) in a bout for the WBO Oriental Super Bantamweight title. The 22 year old Santisima has been one of the most explosive Filipino prospects in recent years and will be favoured here, especially given he is riding a 14 fight winning run. The visitor however is no push over and in 2016 he scored a major upset over Ryo Matsumoto.
Others on the card include Jonas Sultan (14-4, 9) and Ardin Diale (34-12-4, 16), who will be facing against each other, and Arthur Villanueva (32-3, 18), though his opponent hasn't yet been announced.
ALA Boxing Gym, the premier promotional outfit in the Philippines, have revealed that their next card in the "Pinoy Pride" line of shows, "Pinoy Pride 44", will take place on June 9th in Maasin City, and although it's not set to feature any world class bouts it does look like a stacked card with name value running through it, and should be a card that generates a fair bit of attention from those involved in it.
The main event is set to feature the popular Albert Pagara (29-1, 20) taking on Ghana's Laryea Gabriel Odoi (20-3-2, 14), who is best known for losing in a Commonwealth title fight to Martin Ward in 2013. Pagara, originally from Maasin City, will be the overwhelming favourite in the eyes of the fans, but Odoi has never been stopped, and has lost only once in his last 23 fights, having rebuilt following a 0-2 start to his professional career. Athlough Odoi is a tough, then again aren't all fighters teak tough, he has only fought once in the last year, and has only fought 4 times in the last 4 years. For Pagara this is a chance to record his 4th straight win following his 2016 loss to Cesar Juarez
Albert will be joined by older brother Jason Pagara (40-3-1, 25), who takes on Indonesian Geisler AP (12-10-1, 9). It's fair to say that 2017 was a year to forget for the once touted Pagara, who went 0-1-1 for the year. In December he suffered a TKO loss to Hiroki Okada and in both of his 2017 bouts he looked like a fighter who really lacked the commitment and fitness to be fighting. Even an off the boil Pagara should have far too much for the visiting fighter here, with the Indonesian fighter having been stopped in every one of his bouts outside of Indonesia.
Former world title challenger Arthur Villanueva (31-3, 17) will be returning to the ring for the first time since his stoppage loss to Luis Nery as he takes on domestic journeyman Renren Tesorio (16-12-3, 4), in what should be an easy comeback fight for the 29 year old.
In another of the feature bouts the exciting Jeo Santisima (15-2, 13) will battle against Thai visitor Yodsingdaeng Jor Chaijinda (16-5, 10) in a bout for the WBO Oriental Super Bantamweight title. The Thai visitor is 0-5 outside of Thailand is is likely to extend that losing run here against the hard hitting Santisima, who has looked like a real prospect in recent bouts, and will be looking to move into the WBO rankings with another win here. The Thai was riding a 10 fight winning run until recently, with that run ending this past February when he was out pointed by Juan Miguel Elorde, and we suspect he'll now suffer a second successive loss.
Others pencilled in for this card including former world title challenger Melvin Jerusalem (12-2, 7), unbeaten puncher Jeno Macapobre (3-0, 2) and Japanese fighter Go Hosaka (0-0)
Earlier this week ALA announced their next big show, Pinoy Pride 43, which will take place on November 25th in Tagbilaran City, Bohol.
Sadly the card isn't going to be headlined by a world title fight, as some had expected, but on the hand the main event of the card is still a very good looking match up which will see unbeaten Filipino Mark Magsayo (17-0, 13) take on former Japanese champion Shota Hayashi (30-6-1, 18).
The bout will see the unbeaten Magsayo defending his WBO International Featherweight title for the third time, and continue his journey to a world title fight. He won the title back in 2016, stopping Chris Avalos in a FOTY contender, and has since defended the title against Ramiro Robles and Daniel Diaz, whilst talking about moving into a world title fight. Although touted as one of the future stars of Filipino boxing he hans't yet managed to convince his promoters that he's ready to face the likes of Oscar Valdez, Lee Selby, Leo Santa Cruz of Gary Russell Jr. A win here may go some way to getting a shot to prove just how good he is.
Hayashi is a former Japanese Featherweight champion who won the title in September 2016 and made a single successful defense, beating former world champion Akifumi Shimoda. He lost his title earlier this year, suffering a third round stoppage loss to Kosuke Saka in April, and has since bounced back with a win over Markquil Salvana. The loss to Saka put the breaks on his rise, though it's clear that he'll be looking at this bout as a chance to kick start his pursuit of a world title, and put himself back into the title mix.
Other fighters included on his card include the once beaten Albert Pagara (28-1, 19) and former world title challengers Melvin Jerusalem (11-2, 7) and Rocky Fuentes (35-9-2, 20), though all 3 are in bouts that look like mismatches on paper.
Earlier today Filipino fight fans got the chance to see a number of prospects in action as part of a PPV card put on by leading Filipino promotional outfit ALA Promotions. The show featured a number of top prospects and although the televised audience would have disappointing the fighters did, for the most part, deliver.
The main event saw the touted Mark Magsayo (17-0, 13) retain his WBO International Featherweight title, as he blitzed former world title challenger Daniel Diaz (23-8-2, 15) inside a round. Diaz was down 3 times in 105 seconds as Magsayo recorded his second straight opening round stoppage. Although Diaz had been proposed as a tough test having only been stopped twice in his career, in 11 rounds by Koki Kameda and 4 rounds by Andres Gutierrez, Magsayo made it look easy. The problem now for ALA is what they do with Magsayo, as they cannot keep him on a leash for much longer, and they will need to let him face fellow contenders in the near future.
Another opening round win was scored by Jeo Santisima (14-2, 12), who blew away the previously unbeaten Goodluck Mrema (16-1, 8). On paper this looked like a good test for Santisima but he was was too good, too heavy handed and too powerful for the visitor from Tanzania.
Another stoppage win on this card was scored by Albert Pagara (28-1, 19), who beat Patomsith Pathompothong (16-10, 6) [ปฐมสิทธิ์ เกษตรพัฒนา] in 4 rounds. The Thai put in a weird performance here where he seemed to spend more time show boating and playing to the crowd than actually fighting. The stoppage was an odd one too with the Thai being taged by two solid shots but he seemed to send himself to the canvas and take the count in what will go down as a very odd performance, and a third straight stoppage loss for the Thai, who is now 1-6 in his last 7. As for Pagara this was his second win since being stopped by Cesar Juarez a year ago.
The wins for Magsayo, Santisima and Pagara were all expected, though there was an upset as former world title challenger Melvin Jerusalem (11-2, 7) came up short against Joey Canoy (13-3-1, 6). Jerusalem gave Wanheng Menayothin a real run for his money in previous fight and was expected to bounce back with a win here but a knockdown against him in round 7 and point deduction in round 8 denied him a draw, with the judges scoring the contest 95-93, twice, and 96-92 to Canoy. The loss is a major set back for Jerusalem who looked like a world champion in the making and will now see Canoy's career take a huge boost.
Earlier today Filipino fans in Cebu had the chance to see Pinoy Pride 39, a card that featured a number of notable Filipino fighters, along with the newly crowned IBF "interim" Light Flyweight champion Milan Melindo.
Among those in action was WBO #1 ranked Light Welterweight contender Jason Pagara (40-2, 25) who scored an opening round blow out against former world champion Jose Alfaro (28-11-1-2, 24), who suffered his 8th stoppage loss. Alfaro, a former WBA Lightweight champion, was fighting in Asia for the third time and suffered a third stoppage loss in the region following defeats to Yusuke Kobori and Yoshihiro Kamegai. On paper it sounds like a good win for Pagara but the reality is that Alfaro just doesn't win bouts any more and is 1-3-0-1 in his last 5. For Pagara the win was a 13th straight win and he is closing in on a world title fight, though would be a big under-dog in a bout at world level.
Jason's younger brother Albert Pagara (27-1, 18) also picked up a win, bouncing back from his stoppage loss to Cesar Juarez. The talented "Prince" took a clear decision win over the tough Raymond Commey (16-4, 9). Commey, who took on Qiu Xiao Jun earlier this year, claimed just a single round but proved to the type of test that Pagara needed, especially given his loss to Juarez in July.
Further down the card big puncher Melvin Jerusalem (11-0, 7) had to settle for a clear 6 round decision win as he over-came the limited Fabio Marfa (25-32-4, 12) whilst the highly touted Kevin Jake Cataraja (5-0, 4) made extremely light work of John Kenan Villaflor (6-2-2, 2), with a 41 second blow out.
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