By Ronnie Nathanielsz
WBC/WBO bantamweight champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire sparred ten rounds with three separate opponents today and according to his wife Rachael “feels good.”
Donaire is picking up the tempo of his preparation for his last title defense at 118 pounds against undefeated, two division world champion Omar Andres Narvaez of Argentina at New York’s Madison Square Garden on Saturday, October 22, in a fight to be telecast “live” by ABS-CBN and HBO.
Indications are Donaire will move up to the super bantamweight limit and face Mexican warrior Jorge “Travieso” Arce, the current WBO champion, early next year before battling WBC champion Toshiaki Nishioka sometime in May or June.
Donaire has always wanted to fight Arce and Top Rank promoter Bob Arum told us, a fight between the two is a real possibility since the original plan to battle Nishioka early next year fell through since the Japanese champion said he wanted to take a rest after a hard-fought twelve round decision over former world champion Rafael Marquez and wouldn't be ready to enter the ring again in mid-2012.
Rachael Donaire told boxingscene.com/philboxing.com/insidesports.ph that after training today Donaire weighed 126 pounds, which is 8 pounds over the bantamweight limit but was not a matter of concern since “he has not cut down on food yet.”
She said the weather is turning cold in California ‘”so we are just making sure we are loading him up on vitamins so he doesn’t get sick because its getting colder now.”
Rachael Donaire told us that they are holding auditions on YouTube to choose someone to sing the Philippine National Anthem at the title fight and that “Nonito will pick someone before October 15 when he has a media workout at the Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn, New York.
Ms. Donaire said the contestants were good and were made up mainly of Filipinos who were born in the Philippines and then moved to the US. She said “we want to make sure that their pronunciation is good and they won’t get into trouble with Philippine laws” on how the national anthem should be rendered.
Donaire will hold a public media workout on Saturday in San Carlos, California.
Philboxing.com correspondent Rich Mazon reported that Donaire is “giving Filipino residents of the Tri State area (New York, New Jersey and Connecticut) an opportunity to be part of this great sporting event. Not only will one lucky resident be able to watch the fight live at the historic Madison Square Garden at ringside free of charge and the chance to sing the National Anthem in front of thousands attending the fight and millions more watching around the world on HBO, Top Rank and ABS-CBN in the Philippines and the popular TFC, The Filipino Channel.