Ancajas: Widely Ignored World Champion, Impresses Bradley and Atlas

A torrential firestorm of sentiment engulfed the internet following Jeff Horn's announcement as the new WBO World Welterweight Champion when he beat Manny Pacquiao via a controversial unanimous decision win last July 2 at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane, Queensland Australia. The fight was the headline of virtually every sports website for the wrong reasons. Filipino netizens emotions are running rampant as their fury is continually being fuelled with memes and clips of the fight.

Manny Pacquiao's return to free TV after twelve years on pay-per-view, was anticipated as boxing’s shot in the arm, and a good show may put the sport in everybody’s consciousness again with the extensive reach of giant sports broadcast network ESPN. But it instead shot itself in the foot again with the decision as far as pundits are concerned. So much that people forgot to acknowledge two excellent pugilistic displays that took place prior to the main event.

Moments before the controversial decision, an exhilarating atmosphere started to blanket the Suncorp Stadium crowd by virtue of two explosive TKO victories courtesy of undefeated featherweight Michael Conlan and IBF super flyweight king Jerwin Ancajas.

Ancajas, with a record of 25 wins, 1 loss and 1 draw (18 KOs), took the nerve-racking assignment of performing in the main undercard of a big promotion for the first time in his young career. The fight was foreseen as a gauge for Jerwin’s readiness in fighting under tremendous pressure, a test he must surpass to unlock lucrative fight offers in the near future. The native of Panabo City, Davao del Norte did not deter.

Pitted against a decent Japanese customer in Keiru Kinoshita, Ancajas strutted the wares that made him a world champion. Possessing identical records of 25-1-1, the fighter known as Pretty Boy was evidently far more superior than what their records suggest. Though enjoying a height and reach advantage (both 1 inch respectively), the Japanese never effectively made use of them with Ancajas’ predominant ring generalship in full display. The three-person panel of Timothy Bradley, Teddy Atlas and Joe Tessitore can’t help but marvel at the fight long brilliance of the southpaw champion.

Here are some of the comments quoted from renowned boxing trainer Teddy Atlas and 5-time world champion Timothy Bradley:

Timothy Bradley:
           “He looks great, he looks like a champion”  
           “He just looks so mature as a pro”

Teddy Atlas:
          “He’s got all different dimensions to him”
          “Ancajas is giving really a textbook lesson of ways to deal with a taller guy”
Ancajas impressing prominent boxing figures is quite unprecedented, a telling sign that Jerwin is primed for bigger things in the future. Ancajas took Kinoshita out of his misery with a textbook left upper cut-right hook to the body combination that put the challenger on his knees in the seventh round. With the challenger’s right eye shut, the referee put a halt to the onslaught, marking Jerwin Ancajas’ successful venture into the bright lights and retaining his IBF super flyweight belt.

Jerwin “Pretty Boy” Ancajas is currently under promotional contract with MP Promotions of Manny Pacquiao, he is Pacquiao’s first world championship as a promoter. With Ancajas’ successful rise under MP’s banner, the latter’s previous fight is just a preview of better things to come and something Pinoy boxing fans should look forward to.

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord
- Romans 6:23

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