By Ronnie Nathanielsz
WBC/WBO bantamweight champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire’s planned unification bout with WBA champion Anselmo Moreno on November 5 is off.
Top Rank promoter Bob Arum told BoxingScene.com/Daily Inquirer that Moreno “turned it down and we are now looking for another opponent” even as he assured fight fans he’ll get a good opponent for Donaire.
The 26 year old Moreno who is from Panama was involved in a contractual dispute with his manager and has signed up with Golden Boy Promotions on a multi-fight promotional agreement which was probably one of the reasons why the showdown with Donaire didn’t push through.
Moreno won the WBA title with a twelve round decision over Wladimir Sidorenko on May 31, 2008 and escaped with a split decision in a rematch on May 2, 2009.
Donaire on the other hand pulverized Sidorenko on December 4, 2010 after dropping Sidorenko in rounds one and three and smashing his face into a bloody mess.
The classy Filipino who is ranked No. 3 behind countryman Manny Pacquiao in the pound for pound list of the prestigious Ring Magazine won the WBC/WBO titles with a sensational 2nd round TKO over Mexican veteran Fernando “KO-Chulito” Montiel on February 19 this year at the Mandalay Bay Resort Hotel and Casino..
Arum said Donaire’s November fight which will be just six days before his church wedding in the Philippines will likely be his last as a bantamweight since Arum indicated “the idea is to early next year move him up to 122 pounds" which is the super bantamweight limit.
The Top Rank promoter said that the original plan was to have Donaire fight on the undercard of the Miguel Cotto-Antonio Margarito WBA light middleweight title showdown at Madison Square Garden on December 3 but that idea would have to be scrapped since “if he fights in November it would be too short a period of time.”
However, Arum disclosed that Donaire would fight again in the first two or three weeks of January 2012.
He said he is hoping that Donaire will fight the winner of the October 1 clash between Rafael Marquez and WBC super bantamweight champion Toshiaki Nishioka of Japan.