By Ronnie Nathanielsz
WBO/IBF super bantamweight champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire (29-1, 18 KO’s) battles Mexican warrior Jorge “Travieso” Arce ( 60-6-2, 46 KO’s) in October at the famed Staples Center, home of the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers.
Top Rank promoter Bob Arum told BoxingScene.com/Manila Standard on Monday morning here in the US that he is finalizing details of the eagerly awaited bout which he said “ is about ninety percent sure.”
Arum told us that he wanted to do the fight at the Staples Center which is the venue he prefers but indicated “its not easy to clear a date but that’s the first choice. They are working on clearing a Saturday date for us in October.”
Donaire won the vacant WBO super bantamweight title after Arce relinquished the belt which the Mexican won with a 12th round TKO of Wilfredo Vazquez Jr of Puerto Rico on May 7, 2011.
Arce then successfully defended the title with a 4th round TKO over Simphiwe Nongqayi of South Africa on September 23, 2011 before he gave up the title and dropped down to the bantamweight division where he won the vacant title with a twelve round unanimous decision over Indonesia’s Angy Angkota on November 26, 2011.
Donaire faced Vazquez for the vacant WBO super bantamweight crown and won a twelve round split decision on February 4, 2012 at the Alamadome in San Antonio, Texas.
In his last fight Donaire handily won the IBF title from Jeffrey Mathebula of South Africa at the Home Depot Center in Carson City on July 7. Donaire dropped the awkward and much taller South African in the 4th round with a vicious left hook but was unable to put him away as Mathebula was saved by the bell and backpedaled from then on and refused to engage.
Arce in his last fight faced Puerto Rico’s hard-hitting Jesus Rojas in a war that lasted less than two rounds. Arce dropped Rojas with a big right hand in the opening round after which they traded bombs with the Puerto Rican getting the better of his bitter Mexican rival.
Rojas opened the second round with a low blow and followed with several punches and although Arce was given time to recover he was unable to continue and the fight was declared a “no contest.”