Earlier today it was announced that "Filipino Flash" Nonito Donaire (33-3, 21) would be returning to the ring on March 28th for his first fight in the Philippines since his destruction of Raul Martinez back in April 2009, and his first fight of any kind since he was stopped by Nicholas Walters last October.
The popular Donaire, at one time lauded as one of the sports premier fighters, will be fighting as the headliner a blockbuster event at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay.
At the moment Donaire's opponent hasn't been named though we're expecting the bout will take place at Super Bantamweight with Donaire dropping down from Featherweight. Although fighters often find it hard to drop down a class it doesn't seem like it will be a major problem for Donaira who really was up against naturally bigger men at Featherweight and in fact he looks likely to be more natural at 122lbs, where he has previously held the WBO and IBF titles.
Donaire isn't the name confirmed for this show which will also feature Filipino world champion Donnie Nietes (34-1-4, 20) defending his IBF Light Flyweight title in a voluntary defense. We know that two top names have been linked to Nietes here in the form of unbeaten Thai Paipharob Kokietgym (27-0, 20), whose team actually made an offer to Nietes recently, and former unified Minimumweight champion Francisco Rodriguez Jr (16-2-1, 11), who has been linked to Nietes since late last year.
Although no opponent for either of the Filipino fighters been named it does seem likely that Donaire will be fighting a Mexican and this could make a deal with Rodriguez easier to make than one with Paipharob, however it could also see both men looked over for the Nietes fight.
At the moment the full details of the show are somewhat under-wraps but ALA do seem like they could go all out for an extravaganza here considering that several of their other top names haven't yet got anything scheduled prior to show.
(Image courtesy of Chris Farinas/Top Rank)
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