By Salvador Lopez
Fight News Asia Philippines

Binan’s Boxing Tradition Moves On
Binan’s Boxing Tradition Moves On

The City of Binan has always been known for its rich boxing tradition which is being carried by the Olivetti family.  This started way back in the days of the late Oscar Reyes Olivetti, a former Orient Pacific Boxing Federation (“OPBF”) super-featherweight champion, with his legacy passing thru to his sons that included former OPBF super-featherweight champion Eder Olivetti a.k.a. “Tiger Ari” and former RP super-bantamweight champion Dino Olivetti and extended to his grandson, Aaron Jan Melgarejo, a former RP super-featherweight champion who made good account of himself as a major sparring partner of Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao in his preparation for his second fight with Marco Antonio Barrera.  The former IBO Lightweight Champion Jack “The Assassin” Asis also traced his career to the Olivetti Boxing Stable where he first made his mark as a professional. The staging of the   “Bakbakan sa Binan” (“Slugfest in Binan”) at the Binan, Plaza, Binan, Laguna this Tuesday, May 22 is a proof of the city’s support to continue the tradition.

In the main event of the promotion, WBC #6 Jesse Espinas of the SGG Stable became the new RP Junior Flyweight Champion when he defeated erstwhile champion Lester Abutan, himself representing the Olivetti Boxing Stable, via a unanimous decision.  Espinas lived up to expectation as the prohibitive favourite by using his superior skills and speed to thwart whatever Abutan had to offer. His stiff jabs and straights, coupled with his  well-timed uppercuts and precision punchin had Abutan in trouble for the entire fight. It was a gallant effort, however, on the part of the Mindoro warrior as he was able withstand several onslaught  of Espinas and kept himself on his feet where lesser mortals could have been put to sleep.  Saddened by the loss, the Binan crowd were still proud for the gallantry of their defeated champion whilst at the same time appreciative of the new champion who definitely shown himself to be a world class calibre and might be one of the Philippines’ potential world champion. Abutan for his part was a gentleman in defeat acknowledging that his opponent deserves the title whilst at the same time vowing to bounce back with his career.

The rest of the card were just as exciting and the other Olivetti boxers were more successful in their individual fights:

Marchray Taday won an interesting slugfest against Joel Taduran in their 8-round flyweight bout via a unanimous decision.

Jino Rodrigo had a majority draw with Glenn Bismanos in their 6-round lightweight bout figuring two contrasting styles with Rodrigo as the puncher and Bismanos as the boxer which was actually a rematch of their February 10 bout in Mandaluyong.  Rodrigo had Bismanos in serious trouble in the 2nd and 3rd rounds but became impatient as the fight progressed relying on his haymakers which the latter successfully anticipated and evaded whilst patiently regaining his composure andgot back himself into the fight with his well-timed jabs to keep his opponent at bay.

Remon Basas dispatched off Roy Lagrada early in the first round of their scheduled 4-round bantamweight fight.Basas immediately started throwing bombs as the bell sounded prompting Lagrada to scamper for safety all over the place. But then, the expression “you can run but you cannot hide” proved to be true once again and once Lagrada was cornered, a combination to the body immediately stalled his engine and got himself counted out.

Haizon Caba got the Binan boxers to a flying start when he defeated the game Marlon Bacalando via a 2nd round TKO in their super-featherweight bout.

The other fight in the card featured Bobby Boy Ibabao winning a UD against Gebby Manago.  Ibabao managed to deck Manago in the first round but Manago was just too tough a character and was able to last the distance.

The event also marked the promotional debut of Mayla Olivetti wife of Dino Olivetti, who managers the Olivetti Boxing Stable.

RP Youth Title

In the Games and Amusements Board (“GAB”) Ratings Committee held last Monday, May 21, GAB Chairman Baham Mitra spearheaded the discussion of the possibility to have a “RP Youth Title” for the several weight divisions the GAB has right now. As the chairman explained, this would give the less seasoned younger fighters a better opportunity to acquire a recognized title which they can proudly represent and carry with them especially when they will be fighting abroad.  The specific guidelines regarding the introduction of this title are still being worked out but would cover boxers not over 23 years and11 months old. Rating of contenders for the title will also be determined.  This introduction of a separate rating for the RP youth title would certainly be very significant due to the fact that international boxing organisations usually require a fighter fighting for a world youth title usually require that the boxer must be rated in his home country.

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