By Ronnie Nathanielsz
If the huge crowd that showed up at the Event Center of SM in Cebu City for the official weigh in of undefeated WBO No.1 ranked flyweight Milan Melindo and former WBA world champion Jean Piero Perez is any indication - then their “Pinoy Pride XVI” showdown at the Waterfront Hotel and Casino on Saturday is bound to be jam-packed.
Melindo (27-0, 11 knockouts” is aching to get a world title fight in any world organization and aims to win handsomely against Perez (19-4-1, 14 KO’s), who is ranked No.4 by the WBA, to set himself in line for a title shot at Hernan “Tyson” Marquez of Mexico.
Melindo would rather go after the WBA title since the WBO champion in Filipino Brian Viloria and both Melindo and Viloria have indicated they would rather not fight each other if they can help it.
Both Melindo and Perez, who looked trim and sharp, tipped the scales at 112 pounds and promised to do their best.
But Melindo appears the more intense since he is eyeing a world title shot and ALA Promotions president Michael Aldeguer has promised to work on it for next year.
Perez on the other hand looked cool and collected and sure of himself having arrived in Cebu one week ago to get acclimatized.
Videos of Perez’s fights have shown he is ready to battle no matter what the situation and is expected to give Melindo the fight of his life.
In an exciting supporting main event, OPBF flyweight champion Rocky “The Road Warrior” Fuentes weighed in at 111.5 lbs while challenger Myung Ho Lee, a south Korean who fights out of Japan of Japan tipped the scales at 112 lbs. Fuentes will be making the fifth defense of the regional belt he won in 2009 by majority decision against Masafumi Okubo in Japan.