By Ronnie Nathanielsz
Soft spoken and unassuming World Boxing Organization minimum weight champion Donnie “Ahas/Snake” Nietes has retained his title with a twelve round unanimous decision over 21 year old hometown boy Mario Rodriguez in Sinaloa, Mexico.
The sweltering heat atop the ring drained Nietes and it was his excellent condition that helped him successfully defend his title for the fourth time, three of them in Mexico which has turned out to be a happy hunting ground for one of the most underrated world champions in the Philippines.
When we watched Nietes train for the title defense both in Cebu where he sparred with OPBF flyweight champion Rocky Fuentes and skilled, world-rated Milan Melindo and later worked out in the Elorde Gym in Gilmore, San Juan, it was clear that Nietes was in great shape.
Nietes has been training since February waiting for a title defense to happen which ultimately came along under a promotional undertaking of Mexican legend Erik “El Terrible” Morales.
With the win Nietes improved his record to 27-1-3 with 15 knockouts while Rodriguez dropped to 10-6-3 with 7 knockouts. (More to follow).