by Ronnie Nathanielsz
Hard hitting southpaw Michael Farenas is hungry for recognition and a shot at a world title.
A protege of former two division world champion Gerry Penalosa, Farenas has begun training at the Wild Card Gym of celebrated trainer Freddie Roach and will spar eight rounds on Tuesday (Manila Time.)
Penalosa told BoxingScene.com/Manila Standard that he had spoken to Farenas on Sunday and was informed that the talented fighter would spar three times a week going ten rounds and twelve rounds before the end of next week.
Farenas is training with Carl Penalosa, Gerry's brother, and strength and conditioning coach Jay San Pedro who studied his craft in Canada.
Penalosa said Farenas' fight against former outstanding amateur and undefeated American pro Mark Davis "should be a great fight" and that Farenas wants to win."
He said Farenas "hits hard and is hungry. He waited so long for recognition and wants to becone a world champion." Penalosa said that Farenas has the advantage of experience compared to Davis and Penalosa hopes "all his hard work will show in the actual fight."
Penalosa told the Standard that since Farenas is up in the rankings "he must win impressively and cannot afford to lose" but added "he won' t be overconfident" in the IBF junior lightweight eliminator for the No.2 spot in the rankings in a fight card at the Foxwoods Casino in Connecticut on July 2.
Farenas is curently ranked No. 4 by the IBF while Davis is ranked No. 11.
The 29 year old Farenas who has a record of 38-4-4 with 30 knockouts is a strong puncher and is best remembered for his twelve round unanimous decision loss to former Cuban Olympic gold medalist Yuriorkis Gamboa on December 8, 2012 in which he dropped Gamboa in an WBA super featherweight/junior lightweight Interim title fight.
Davis was an outstanding amateur with some 200 bouts and his boxrec.com biography states he won a gold medal at the 2002 US Junior Olympics at 42kg beating Cesar Seda Jr. before winning a gold medal at the 2002 US National Silver Gloves at 100lbs, a gold medal at the 2002 US Junior Olympics at 95lbs and a gold medal as a Junior at the 2002 Police Athletic League (PAL) tournament at 106lbs.
Davis also won a silver medal at the 2003 PAL at 112lbs beating Charles Huerta but losing to Ron Siler before he grabbed a gold medal for the USA at the 2003 Under-19 Sweden Cup at 112lbs.
Davis competed at the 2003 World Cadet championships as a flyweight as well as the US Olympic Trials for the 2004 Olympics beating Charles Huerta but losing to Ron Siler and then on a walk over to Aaron Alafa. He was a gold medallist at the 2005 US National championships at featherweight beating Richard Baltazar and Ray Robinson. He also won two contests for USA at 2005 World Cup also fighting as a featherweight and competed at the 2005 World Championships at 57kg.
Davis also won two bouts when representing USA vs Belarus in 2006 as a f eatherweight and won the gold medal at the 2006 US championships and later won the Eastern Olympic trials for the US team to the 2008 Olympics.