by Ronnie Nathanielsz
One time welterweight title prospect Mark Jason Melligen is making a determined comeback and according to his promoter Sammy Gello-ani will fight for the WBO Asia Pacific title on September 15.
Gello-ani said Melligen has impressed him with his commitment and hard work in the gym and he plans to reward the talented southpaw with a regional title fight.
Gello-ani told the Manila Standard that Melligen is “back in the training camp in Balianga, Misamis Oriental and we are still negotiating for an opponent either a Thai or an Indonesian.”
He said Melligen has “a very strong motivation and has the desire to succeed again.”
Gello-ani revealed that the mindset of Melligen who feels “more challenged now to prove something.
He disclosed that when Melligen initially arrived at the training camp he was “so big but when he fought last July 16 he trimmed down easily and told me ‘Sir I will fight at 147.”
Gello-ani told Melligen “okay, that’s no problem if that will be your fighting weight. Prepare well and I will get you a title shot.”
The 26 year old southpaw has a record of 22-3 with 15 knockouts and is coming off a 1st round TKO of journeyman Dondon Lapuz last July 16 which followed a one year layoff after he lost badly to Argentina’s Sebastian Andres Lujan on July 1, 2011.
In what Top Rank believed was a career defining fight an out-of-condition Melligen was dropped in rounds 6, 7, 8 and 9 and lost by a ninth round knockout.
A prospect of Top Rank promoter Bob Arum, Melligen was given a second chance by the promoter after he dropped a ten round split decision in a crucial clash with Michel Rosales. But after winning five fights in a row against tough opponents Melligen failed to train hard and lost to Lujan which ended his chances with Top Rank.
Melligen claims he has learned his lesson the hard way and is ready to return and prove his worth.