By Ronnie Nathanielsz
In a major breakthrough that is certain to take Philippine boxing to another level and enhance the growing emergence of the Waterfront Hotel & Casino as Asia’s counterpart of the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, ALA Promotions and the Brave Heart boxing stable of former North Cotabato governor Manny Pinol have reached an agreement.
Under the agreement ALA Promotions as part of its growing national and international promotions will initially feature Brave Heart boxers on its fight cards which are telecast by ABS-CBN. .
After having signed names like two-time World Champion Katsunari Takayama of Japan, Former World Champion Florante Condes of the Philippines and World contender Jimrex “The Executioner” Jaca, ALA Promotions has welcomed the fighters of ex-governor and media man Pinol.
Respected boxing patron Tony Aldeguer told the Inquirer that he welcomed the Pinol fighters with open arms but clarified that in their initial fight card in January they would only include flyweight Edrin “One Sting” Dapudong (20-3, 11 KO’s) and either super bantamweight Rolando “Smooth Operator” Magbanua (19-1, 14 KO’s) or undefeated featherweight Lorenzo “Thunder Volt” Villanueva (18-0, 17 KO’s).
The two Brave Heart fighters will see action on the undercard of the grudge rematch between featherweight Rey “Boom Boom” Bautista and Alejandro Barrera, a cousin of Mexican legend Marco Antonio Barrera who lost to Bautista in what the Mexicans considered a controversial 4th round TKO last August.
Aldeguer said he liked Dapudong “because he is a fighter” even though he lost the WBC silver flyweight title to Wilbert Uicab last September 17 after scoring a sensational 1st round KO over WBC No. 1 rated Jesus Jimenez on June 19 this year.
ALA Promotions President Michael Aldeguer said “This is a very positive thing for Philippine boxing. I believe that the Philippines has some of the most talented boxers around and I have always pictured our country to be the next boxing Mecca of the world.”
Aldeguer met recently with Top Rank promoter Bob Arum who committed to support the ALA boxing gym fighters and to work closely with ABS-CBN both in the Philippines as well as in the US and Mexico.