FILIPINO International Boxing Federation (IBF) super flyweight champion Jerwin “Pretty Boy” Ancajas makes his fifth defense of his title this weekend and is just as focused and determined as in his previous fights even if he is going up against a compatriot this time around.
Set to take on Jonas “Zorro” Sultan of Zamboanga on May 27 (Manila time) in California, the Panabo City native Ancajas shared that he is setting aside the “Filipino versus Filipino” angle of the fight for now and is working hard in training and keen on notching the win come fight night.
“I’m setting aside the Filipino versus Filipino aspect of the bout. I’m defending my title and as a champion I will do everything I can to stay as the champion. I really want to win regardless who it is against. Me and my team have gone through a lot to reach to this level. It does not matter who I face,” said Mr. Ancajas (29-1-1) in the vernacular in an interview with BusinessWorld in the lead-up to his fight against ALA Promotions’ Sultan (14-3).
But he was quick to say though that he has a lot of respect for Mr. Sultan, who he expects to come into the fight with dogged determination as he is.
“This is my fifth title defense and while I’m already comfortable going into such fights we’re giving much focus on this because we know we are going up against an opponent who really wants to win as I do. In training we made some changes to be able to take the challenge head-on,” Mr. Ancajas said.
The soft-spoken champion, who is coming off an impressive 10th-round knockout victory over Mexican Israel Gonzalez in his last title defense in February, also shared that he has gone accustomed to the newfound fame his recent conquests have given him and assured that it has not derailed him from his mission to become the next big thing in Philippine boxing.
“Slowly I have gone accustomed to the jacked-up attention given to me. I’m very grateful to be put in such a position. I thank all of my supporters who are behind me and providing encouragement to continue what I am doing,” he said.
“I’m focused on the fight at hand and I’m asking prayers as well that both me and Sultan get to give a good performance and don’t get injured along the way,” Mr. Ancajas said.
The Ancajas-Sultan fight, which was originally set to happen in April, will be held at the Save Mart Center in Fresno, California, and will be shown live over ESPN5 on Sunday beginning at 10 a.m. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo