By Ronnie Nathanielsz
Former two division world champion Gerry Penalosa has praised newly crowned WBA featherweight super champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire for overcoming the adversity of a nasty gash under his left eyebrow caused by a series of head-butts by former champion Simpiwe Vetyeka of South Africa to win a 4th round unanimous technical decision in Macau last Saturday.
Penalosa told the Manila Standard that Donaire has “inborn talent, his timing was perfect and he showed great footwork. It was a fine performance.”
However, Penalosa said he felt Donaire hadn’t trained long enough but he was “still very good. Imagine if he was in one hundred percent condition.”
Penalosa stressed that “with his father now training him and with Robert Garcia also there Nonito he should be even better. He is truly a genuinely talented fighter.”
He said Donaire was a heavy puncher and “his timing was great.”
Penalosa said he noticed that Donaire was only 80 percent in terms of condition for his fights and added, “what more if he was one hundred percent ready. He’d be awesome.”
In the meantime South Africa’s senior sports correspondent of AVUSA Media sports hub, David Isaackson has clarified the confusion over the scorecard of 49-46 announced by Lupe Contreras at the end of the fight.
Since referee Luis Pabon had asked the timekeeper to ring the bell signaling the start of round five before he promptly called a halt to the action because Donaire could hardly see from his left eye which was ripped and gushing blood, the WBA rules require incomplete rounds to be scored even if they are a second long which is why all three judges – Raul Caiz Jr, Levi Martinez and Francisco Martinez scored the 5th round an even 10-10 which prejudiced neither fighter.