Monthly Archives: November 2013

Air tension endangers pingpong, boxing diplomacy

“Take the diplomacy out of war and the thing would fall flat in a week.” WILL ROGERS

By Alex P. Vidal

The act of an American private sports outfit to invest in China through the promotion of Manny Pacquiao versus Brandon Lee Rios bout in Macao last November 24, can be considered as “boxing diplomacy” following the famous “pingpong diplomacy” in 1971 and the “badminton diplomacy” (I coined this term in an article I wrote in 2009 in Chicago) in 2009 in Tehran, Iran.
In the Cold War era and during ferocious anti-communist campaign in the 60s, it’s inconceivable to see an American sports company like Top Rank doing business in a Chinese property. The Pacquiao-Rios tussle generated millions of dollars in revenues for hotels and shops and capitalism had a field day in Macao for a couple of weeks. But the boxing diplomacy may turn out to be short-lived if we review the front page story of the Philippine Daily Inquirer dated November 28 or four days after the Pacquiao-Rios duel.


In that front page story, a US B-52 Stratofortress bomber was reported to have flown over the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea that the Chinese call Diaoyu Islands. Beijing said on November 7 it monitored two B-52s flying over the islands in defiance of its declaration of an “air defense identification zone” in the area.
“The Chinese government has the will and ability to defend our national sovereignty and security,” foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang was quoted to have said at a regular press briefing in the report by Agence France-Presse.
Now that tension has again escalated between China and the USA, all the efforts put forward in the past to improve diplomatic relations between two countries through sports, are in danger of being to put to waste.
When the war was raging in Vietnam and the Cold War was entering its 26th year in April 1971 or 37 years ago, a Pan Am 707 landed in Detroit, Michigan, carrying the People’s Republic of China’s world champion table tennis team for a series of matches and tours in 10 cities around the United States.


The era of Ping-Pong diplomacy had begun 12 months earlier when the American team– in Nagoya, Japan, for the World Table Tennis Championship–got a surprise invitation from their Chinese colleagues to visit the People’s Republic. Time magazine called it “The ping heard round the world.” And with good reason: no group of Americans had been invited to China since the Communist takeover in 1949.
Why had they been invited? Smithsonian’s David A. DeVoss said the Chinese felt that by opening a door to the United States, they could put their mostly hostile neighbors on notice about a possible shift in alliances. The United States welcomed the opportunity; President Richard M. Nixon had written: “We simply cannot afford to leave China outside the family of nations.”


Soon after the U.S. team’s trip, Nixon, not wanting to lose momentum, secretly sent Secretary of State Henry Kissinger to Peking to arrange a Presidential visit to China. Nixon’s journey seven months later, in February 1972, became one of the most important events in U.S. postwar history. “Never before in history has a sport been used so effectively as a tool of international diplomacy,” said Chinese Premier Chou En-lai. For Nixon, it was “the week that changed the world.”
In February 2002, President George W. Bush, in his second trip to China, recalled the meeting that came out of Ping-Pong diplomacy, telling President Jiang Zemin: “Thirty years ago this week, President Richard Nixon showed the world that two vastly different governments could meet on the grounds of common interest and in a spirit of mutual respect.”


Despite its critical diplomatic relationship with Iran, the US Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs sent a delegation of 12 Americans, including eight female athletes, coaches, and managers representing USA Badminton, to Tehran, Iran, from February 3-9, 2009.
The team competed in the Fajr International Badminton Tournament at the invitation of the Iranian Badminton Federation.
From pingpong, US had embarked on another peaceful mission through badminton in the hostile territory in a bid to improve its relationship with the Islamic country which has blamed the West for its various problems.


The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and USA Badminton also hosted the Iranian Badminton Federation for the U.S. Open in July 2009. The visit was reportedly part of the US’s “people-to-people” exchanges with Iran.
Since 2006, the US has included Iranians in a range of educational, professional, and cultural exchange programs. In the past two years, over 250 Iranians, including artists, athletes, and medical professionals, have participated in exchange programs in the United States.
Through its Sports United program, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs has brought the Iranian National Teams for Basketball, Water Polo, Weightlifting, and members of the men’s and women’s National Table Tennis teams to the United States. The US also sent 20 members of USA Wrestling to Iran to compete in the prestigious Takhti Cup in January 2007.

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Posted by on November 29, 2013 in Uncategorized


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Pacquiao’s tax woes a result of bloated purse reportage

“The avoidance of taxes is the only intellectual pursuit that still carries any reward.” JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES


By Alex P. Vidal

We must go to the bottom first. Who are the publicists of Manny Pacquiao who have been drum-beating about his exorbitant multi-million dollar ring earnings over these past five years?
In those years that I covered Pacquiao’s fights in the United States, I observed that these publicists did not report accurately Pacquiao’s real purse per fight.
For instance, if his purse when he fought Oscar De La Hoya on December 6, 2008 was $18 million plus shares in the pay-per-view, publicists reported that he bankrolled $35 million excluding shares in pay-per-view. When he got $12 million against Ricky Hatton on May 2, 2009, they reported in press releases that the Filipino fighter ran away with a whooping $25 million minus PPV shares. When Pacquiao pocketed $14 million versus Miguel Angel Cotto on November 14, 2009, they parroted that he collected $25 million minus PPV share. And so on and so forth.


I couldn’t understand why they had to bloat Pacquiao’s ring earnings in media. They probably thought “anyway, it’s just a news item and people won’t really mind how much he earns as long as he always wins.” In most articles, they reported the total sum of Pacquiao’s cash prize without stating the cuts taken for the trainer’s fees, among other slices and deductions.
If their intention is to confuse the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the United States, definitely their gimmick defies logic. The more that Pacquiao earns, the more taxes he must pay. The Forbes Magazine has listed him as one of the top 20 richest paid athletes in the world with estimated worth of $100 million.
If their purpose is to portray Pacquiao as one of the highest paid professional athletes in the planet in the league of Tiger Woods, David Beckham, Romario, Roger Federer, and Kobe Bryant, the braggadocio has backfired.
Their false reportage has hurt Pacquiao and he is now experiencing the damage done by that inaccuracy.


Aside from IRS which does not distinguish whether you are a world champion or a patsy as long as you earn and owes taxes to government, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) in the Philippines has also been doing its homework.
Since the tax agency is claiming that it has not received Pacquiao’s tax records with the IRS despite repeated requests, it is possible that it based their estimates of his total earnings or earnings obtained in 2008 to 2009 from these reports–or from taxes he paid in the past, among other sources.
The BIR is hot after the heels of the most celebrated world boxing champion in connection with the P2.2 billion case filed against him for back taxes — including interests and surcharges. BIR chief Kim Henares confirmed they have started garnishing some of the boxer’s bank accounts.


It’s the job of Pacquiao’s accountants and probably lawyers to handle the problem, and they must deal with the BIR in the most professional manner sans media hoopla and blunderbuss if they hope to ferret out a win-win solution.
They must produce necessary documents showing that the rich athlete has been paying taxes religiously and there was no intention whatsoever to hoodwink the government or dodge his basic responsibility as a Filipino citizen. Bob Arum has volunteered to save Pacquiao from the abyss by producing the IRS papers.
Like any ordinary citizen or businessman, Pacquiao should immediately settle whatever taxes he owes the Philippine government–if the evidence warrants– without the need to swap brickbats laced with political undertones against politicians allied with the government.
We are always reminded of Al Capone when we remember the popular adage that says, “You can’t fight city hall.”

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Posted by on November 27, 2013 in Uncategorized


‘Robin’ dead; ‘Batman’ neutralized

“Even in killing men, observe the rules of propriety.” CONFUCIUS


By Alex P. Vidal

If “Batman and Robin” were working for government as anti illegal drugs agents, drug syndicates may be starting to smell victory now that they have neutralized Batman two years after they murdered his kickback, Robin.
I’m referring to retired police Superintendent Musa Amiyong, former deputy chief of the Iloilo City Public Safety Management Company, who has been in state of comatose (as of this writing) at the intensive care unit (ICU) of St. Paul’s Hospital after being fatally shot several times on the neck by two motorcycle-riding assailants on Quirino Bridge on November 22 evening.
The attack, the third attempt on his life in four months this year, came after he left the house of his textmate, Melissa Esperonce-Aguirre alias “Love-Love”, in Lapuz at past 9 o’clock in the evening.


In an apparent squid tactic, Amiyong’s enemies–or those interested to have him liquidated–were now trying to muddle the issue by linking his attack on a supposed mysterious liaison with women. It was allegedly his first meeting with “Love Love” and the woman did not know he was a retired cop as he introduced himself as “Bebot”.
If “Love Love” did not know “Bebot” personally and met him only for the first time as she claimed, why did she spend time with him in a dinner inside “Love Love’s” house together with “Love Love’s” trusted friends, Glenda Medrocillo and Racquel Galvez?
Amiyong’s companion, known only as “Tukmol” when he visited “Love Love”, was nowhere to be found when the shooting occurred.


Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) director, Senior Supt. Ruperto Floro, refused to speculate if the attack on Amiyong or “Batman”, a Muslim, was related to drugs or women.
The task force headed by Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) Special Operations Group chief, Supt. Uldarico Garbanzos, continued to face a blank wall.
Amiyong, 58, is a controversial character in law enforcement. His name had been linked to illegal drugs and in the murder of a fellow cop who was an active crusader against illegal drugs, but his accusers could not pin him down on these issues for lack evidence and witnesses.


Amiyong was also once accused of harassing the political supporters of Iloilo Rep. Jerry Trenas as he was identified with former justice Secretary Raul Gonzalez Sr., whose son, Raul Jr., lost to Trenas in two successive congressional elections.
When he was active in police service, he befriended a lot of media people and made one of them as his civilian sidekick in his campaign against illegal drugs in the metropolis.
Since the murder of his radioman sidekick, Lito Jimena or “Robin”, on August 22, 2011 in E.B. Magalona, Negros Occidental, he was never the same again. He became more security conscious and would suspect everyone who stared at him as potential assassin.


On August 24, 2011, unidentified gunmen also tried to kill him while he was about to board a ferry boat back to Iloilo from Bacolod after visiting Jimena’s cadaver at the morgue of the Teresita Jalandoni Provincial Hospital in Silay City.
Jimena or “Robin” died from gunshot wounds on the head after being chased down by two hit men while riding on his motorbike.
In that 2011 incident, the suspects, believed to be cohorts of those who finished off “Robin”, spotted “Batman” in the Bacolod pier, sources reported.
The presence of policemen in the wharf alarmed the gunmen thus they decided to call off the operation, they added.
Since 2011 or even earlier than than, Batman was reportedly aware that he was being followed and also probably marked for liquidation by the same characters who murdered his civilian partner.

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Posted by on November 26, 2013 in Uncategorized


Warning: Don’t go back to Las Vegas, Manny!

“You have been trapped in the inescapable net of ruin by your own want of sense.”


By Alex P. Vidal

If we truly love Sarangani Rep. Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao and we want to preserve him as a national sports icon, we must start a nationwide campaign to convince him to retire now that he is still “ahead” by virtue of that face-saving 12-round unanimous decision win over Brandon Lee “Bam Bam” Rios in Macao last November 24.
Many of us are still probably overjoyed that Pacquiao “is back” after that lips-first flat fall disaster against Juan Manuel Marquez on December 8, 2012, but only few have realized that an “ambush” is waiting for him in his next fight if Top Rank’s Bob Arum will bring him back to Las Vegas, the lion’s den.
Aging Pacquiao will only be fed to the lions and he could suffer worse than the Marquez one-punch brutality that made many of his fanatics cry and run amuck in shame and disgust.


In Las Vegas, the rich will further enrich themselves, the tired and weary will further wear a crimson and exacerbate his physical deterioration. They will pit Pacquiao next against fighters who have studied and memorized Pacquiao’s style; and, thus, they know how to avoid being drilled and bulldozed into submission like what Rios did. To survive the distance with Pacquiao was already a “victory” for upstarts like Rios and wily promoters love this scenario.
Pacquiao is still good; he has the speed of Don Quixote’s windmills; the congressman tots a menacing stoppage ledger; he can still land a tornado blow and rearrange a camel’s ribcage, there is no doubt about it.
But he is on the way to the slammer and the tell tale signs are crystal clear: his knockout percentage has declined. The last time he scored a short cut win was four years ago or eight fights ago when he bludgeoned Miguel Angel Cotto in the 12th and final stanza for WBO welterweight jewels at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.


Except for the fourth meeting against Marquez, all of Pacquiao’s seven previous fights (5 wins, 1 KO loss to Marquez, 1 draw to Marquez) after wrecking Cotto lasted the distance.
“Pacquiao has lost his sting,” observed an American analyst who had predicted a 9th round knockout win for Pacquiao against Rios.
The Rios victory was good for the pride of the country reeling from the aftershocks of super typhoon Yolanda, but it confirmed–more than anything else–that our pambansang kamao (national fist) was seemingly “tired” and now deserves to be shielded–or to put it bluntly, protected from dialectical materialism creeping the industry.


As a prizefighter, we will never hear religious Pacquiao squirm in protest that he is tired of disfiguring handsome faces; we can never hear him grumble “I quit” even if his work rate has ebbed and his kinetic energy has subsided. As long as Uncle Bob and the behemoth Top Rank promotion call the shots, Pacquiao will continue to break bones and damage retinas in the square jungle.
Still fresh in our memory was the shellacking he inflicted on unbeaten Timothy Bradley on June 9, 2012 in defense of Pacquiao’s WBO belt in Las Vegas.
If a pugilist couldn’t nail a KO win, Pacquiao’s performance that night was an excellent paragon of why boxing is touted as sweet science. And yet, they robbed him and committed the biggest injustice in history of Marquess of Queensberry by handing to Bradley the WBO bauble on a barbaric split decision.


Las Vegas bookies “punished” Pacquiao for his failure to score knockouts in his last four assignments before facing Bradley thus Bradley became the beneficiary of that “mortal sin.”
The unanimous decision victory in Macao certainly failed to convince them once more as they were baying for a knockout so they could give Pacquiao a red carpet welcome in Las Vegas, the mecca of boxing and entertainment, when Arum, et al uncork the imprimatur for Pacquiao to duke it out against either Bradley or Mayweather next.
Now that Pacquiao failed to deliver in Macao, we fear another “punishment” reminiscent of the Bradley boondoggle. We must save our hero. He must retire now!

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Posted by on November 25, 2013 in Uncategorized


Why Pacquiao will win by unanimous decision


By Alex P. Vidal

Bob Arum would not give Manny Pacquiao a chance to redeem himself after losing by 6th round knockout to Juan Manuel Marquez on December 8, 2012 if the Top Rank chief executive officer knew Pacquiao could not beat his comeback opponent.
Thus Arum picked 27-year-old iron-jawed Brandon Lee “Bam Bam” Rios (31-1, 23 KOs 1 draw) to test Pacquiao’s mettle and see if he still have what it takes to become world champion again at 34.
Never mind if the WBO international welterweight belt that Pacquiao and Rios will dispute on November 24 at the Cotai Arena, Venetian Resort in Macao, China is not a legitimate world championship. Pacquiao’s comeback fight against the former world champion Rios is crucial and will serve as the basis if Arum can still sign him up for more multi-million contracts against the current world champions in the 147 lbs division in his next fights.


Pacquiao (54-5, 38 KOs 3 draws) is under obligation to fulfill a contract with Top Rank thus Arum is morally obliged to “protect” his ward by hook or by crook, so to speak.
Under the contract, Pacquiao still has two fights left under Top Rank but he has the option to retire after the Rios fight.
Since Rios does not have the caliber of Pacquaio’s previous opponents, oddsmakers are giving him a slim chance to score an upset against the 8-division world champion from General Santos City in Mindanao.
Upsets, however, happen when they are least expected like in the case of Pacquiao vs Marco Antonio Barrera first fight on November 15, 2003 where Pacquiao scored a dramatic 11th round TKO against the most charismatic Mexican world champion in that period.
Rios has been training for at least five months and he is expected to be in perfect shape when he scuffles with Pacquiao who has trained only for about two months.


If Rios is mentally and physically prepared, he won’t be a patsy when he squares off with Pacquiao. Pacquiao will have to be extra cautious when he attempts to finish off the younger Rios in the early rounds so as not to repeat the tragic ending inflicted on him by Marquez in his last fight. And his coaching team is aware of this reality.
If Pacquiao can’t put away Rios and the fight goes the full route, he will win by unanimous decision. Both protagonists will be judged by “friendly” officials: Lisa Giampa, Michael Pernick, and Manfred Kuechler and the fight won’t be held in the glitzy Las Vegas where mafias wield tremendous power and influence; and where Pacquiao was “punished” en route to losing by a highly controversial split decision to Timothy Bradley on June 9, 2012.

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Posted by on November 23, 2013 in Uncategorized


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Pacquiao aims to do a Pancho Villa after two straight losses

“With experience in boxing, you learn how to be a scientific boxer and how to fight easy.” MANNY PACQUIAO

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By Alex P. Vidal

Like Manny Pacquiao, Pancho Villa, the first Asian and Filipino world champion, also incurred two straight defeats and was on the verge of kissing goodbye his young fistic career when he slammed a crucial victory that propelled him back to the mainstream of world championship.
After two straight losses to Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez, Pacquiao is aiming to duplicate Villa’s luck when he battles Brandon Lee “Bam Bam” Rios in Macau on November 24, to stay away from the brink of elimination and keep his hopes alive for a duel versus Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Villa (78 wins with 22 KOs, 8 losses and 2 draws) was 21 years old when his manager, Frank Churchill, brought him to the United States in 1922. Villa had an intimidating record when he left the Philippines: 15 straight wins. He had only one defeat, a disqualification to Eddie Moore in Manila on August 9, 1921. Villa’s record when he arrived in the US was 23 wins, 1 loss, 2 draws. Six of those 23 wins came by way of knockout.


Disaster struck in his first two fights on the American soil when he lost a pair of decisions to future world champions Abe Goldstein and Frankie Genaro.
New York speedster Goldstein (70-16, 35 KOs, 7 draws) gave Villa a rude welcome in the land of milk and honey when they clashed at the Oakland A.A. in New Jersey on June 7, 1922. Goldstein, taller by four inches, pounded out a unanimous verdict after 12 rounds.
Villa was back again on the same ring less than a month after losing to Goldstein, only to be trounced via 12-round unanimous decision by Genaro on July 6, 1922.
Churchill was taken aback by the back-to-back setbacks and didn’t want his investment on the “Mighty Atom” from Ilog, Negros Occidental to go to waste without hoping for a miracle. So he immediately signed up unheralded Frankie Murray to face Villa next.


Villa traveled to New York and dispatched Murray on points in a six-rounder aperitif at the Margolies A.C. in Queens on July 19, 1922 or 13 days after bowing out to Genaro.
The win revived Villa’s chances to earn a berth at the world crown. Ten days later on July 29, 1922, Villa launched a three-win juggernaut by pounding out a 12-round unanimous decision against Terry Miller at the Asbury Park in New Jersey.
In what could be the briefest preparation in boxing history, Villa returned to New York three days after conquering Miller and outduked Johnny Hepburn in a six-rounder tiff at the Ebbet’s Field in Brooklyn on August 2, 1922. This was followed by an 8-round points win against Sammy Cohen on August 15, 1922 on the same venue.
Just when Villa was a cinch away from becoming the first Asian to earn a crack at the world title, Genaro repulsed him again on points in an epic 10-rounder rematch on August 22, 1922 on the same arena in New York.


Villa shrugged off his third loss in the US and sent a loud message by hammering out a spectacular 11th round knockout against Johnny Buff on September 14, 1922 on the same ring in New York.
The big KO win signaled Villa’s rise to stardom as he followed it with nine straight victories, toppling like pin balls all the toughest flyweights America could offer, including a 15-round points revenge against Goldstein for the American flyweight crown at the Madison Square Garden on November 16, 1922.
Those who fell from Villa’s murderous binge were: Danny Edwards (10-round points), Patsy Wallace (8-round points), Young Montreal (10-round points), Terry Martin (15-round points in defense of the American flyweight crown), Battling Al Murray (8-round points), Frankie Mason (KO 5th in defense of the American flyweight diadem), Henry “Kid” Wolfe (KO 3rd).
Villa finally yielded the American flyweight title on a controversial 15-round split decision to Genaro in their third meeting. Scoring referee Andy Griffin and judge Billy “Kid” McPartland saw Genaro the winner while third judge Harold Barnes favored Villa.


After his third loss to Genaro, gold medalist in the 1920 Antwerp Olympics, Villa rebounded with four point victories against Young Montreal in rematch, Willie Darcey, Clarence Rosen, and Battling Al Murray in rematch and was defeated on points by Bobby Wolgast.
Instead of being sent home to the Philippines following a loss to Wolgast, Villa was awarded with a berth to the world flyweight crown due to his sterling record (17 wins, 5 losses) in a two-year US campaign.
On June 18, 1923, Villa, whose real name was Franciso Guilledo, made history by becoming the first Filipino and Asian to capture a legitimate world boxing crown by virtue of 7th round knockout over defending world flyweight champion Jimmy Wilde at the Polo Grounds in New York.
Villa rolled to 13 straight wins after disposing off Wilde and lost to Bud Taylor (Villa’s world crown not at stake). He collected 10 more straight wins and a draw versus Eddie McKenna, before losing on points in 10 rounds to welterweight terror Jimmy McLarnin on July 4, 1925.
Villa had an ulcerated tooth extracted earlier on the day of the fight. A few days later, on July 14, he died from Ludwig’s angina resulting from an infection that spread to his throat.
Villa’s title became vacant. The next day William Muldoon of the NYSAC proclaimed Frankie Genaro Pancho’s “legitimate successor.” But it was Fidel LaBarba who would become the next undisputed flyweight champion of the World.

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Posted by on November 21, 2013 in Uncategorized


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Will Rios do to Pacquiao what Jaguar Kakizawa did to Elorde?

“If you even dream of beating me you’d better wake up and apologize.” MUHAMMAD ALI


By Alex P. Vidal

After absorbing back-to-back defeats to Yoshiaki Numata, Akihisa Someya, and Eugenio Espinoza from 1967 to 1969, Gabriel “Flash” Elorde refused to heed calls for his retirement.
The longest reigning world juior lightweight champion from Bogo, Cebu was already 34 years old when pitted against Japanese journeyman, Jaguar Kakizawa, at the Araneta Coliseum in Cubao, Quezon City on April 26, 1969.
The same age of Manny Pacquiao today who will tangle against 27-year-old brawler, Brandon “Bam Bam” Rios, for the vacant WBO international welterweight crown at the The Venetian Macao Resort in Macau, China on November 24.
Younger by 12 years, Kakizawa (35 wins, 11 losses with 5 KOs and 2 draws), embarrassed Elorde (89 wins, 27 defeats with 33 KOs and 2 draws) before a partisan Filipino crowd via 10-round unanimous decision.


The loss to Kakizawa was a bitter pill to swallow for Elorde’s father-in-law and manager Lope “Papa” Sarreal Sr. as it was supposed to be Elorde’s tune-up fight for him to shoot once more for the WBC junior lightweight title against Hokkaido-born Numata (44-8, 12 KOs, 2 draws).
It was Numata who ended Elorde’s reign as WBC junior lightweight ruler for seven years via 15-round majority decision on June 15, 1967, and Sarreal could not forgive Numata, then 22 years old, and the reigning Oriental Pacific champion, for snatching away Elorde’s belt.
The name Numata was an enigma to both Elorde and Sarreal. The same Numata stopped Elorde eight-fight winning streak when he also grabbed Elorde’s OPBF crown by 12-round unanimous decision in Tokyo, Japan on June 9, 1966.
For Elorde to earn a third match against Numata and a crack at the Japanese’ WBC jewels, he needed to surpass two barriers — Someya and Espinoza. But, alas, Someya repulsed Elorde by 10-round majority decision in Manila on October 28, 1967. To compound his woes and further delay his climb to Numata’s throne, Espinoza bombed Elorde out via 10-round unanimous decision in Quito, Ecuador on February 16, 1969. The loss the Kakizawa further derailed the Elorde Express.


Elorde’s three straight defeats to Someya and Espinoza and later to Kakizawa, proved to be moot and academic as Numata lost the WBC crown to compatriot Hiroshi Kobayashi on a shock 12-round knockout in Tokyo on December 14, 1967.
As Elorde struggled to get past Someya, Espinoza, and Kakizawa, Numata tried in vain to add the WBC lightweight bauble in his collection of world belts when he was flattened in sixth canto by Mando Ramos in Los Angeles, California on October 4, 1969.
As Numata disappeared from Elorde’s radar, Kobayashi was stripped of the WBC title and another Filipino, Rene Barrientos (37-7, 2 draws) of Balete, Aklan, was awarded the world crown that originally belonged to Elorde, who had previously beaten Barrientos on points in Cebu on February 27, 1965.
Elorde never had a chance to fight for world title again. No more third meeting with Numata. No title shot against fellow southpaw Barrientos, who didn’t stay long as world champion. Elorde was already aging when young Panamian dynamo Roberto Duran entered the picture and dominated Elorde’s division for a decade.


Elorde retired after being humiliated by a patsy Japenese Hiroyuki Murakami in Tokyo on May 20, 1971. He had the universe under his feet when he wrapped up the WBC junior lightweight title with a devastating 7th round knockout against Harold Gomes on March 16, 1960 at the Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City. The embarrassment inflicted by Murakami in Elorde’s farewell fight had served as an ugly blot in a magnificent record that started in 1951.
If Rios (31-1, 23 KOs 1 draw) will upset Pacquiao (55-7, 40 KOs 1 draw) on November 24, history will be repeated after 46 years. Pacquiao has incurred back-to-back losses to Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez, and is itching to climb back the ladder in a hope to get a stab at the legitimate world title once more.
The vacant WBO international welterweight belt to be disputed by Pacquiao and Rios does not have the legitimacy of a regular world championship. “International” champions, however, are compulsory candidates for world title matches.
Pacquiao badly needs to roll back into the win column and must beat Rios decisively in order to avert the misfortune that befell Elorde, who refused to hang up his gloves after amassing a fortune in prizefighting–and after securing his highly revered seat in fistic history. Or Pacquiao can opt for a choice retirement while he is still “ahead.”

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Posted by on November 20, 2013 in Uncategorized


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