Filipino boxers

Ancajas drops sparring partner, Sultan pummels punching bag

Roy Luarca

FULL SUPPORT. Jerwin Ancajas trains for his upcoming bout while also helping out former foe Jonas Sultan.

Alvin S. Go/Rappler

Jerwin Ancajas gears up for his 10th title defense while Jonas Sultan looks all set for his late October bout versus unbeaten Puerto Rican Carlos Caraballo

Jerwin Ancajas put a young phenomenon to his knees while Jonas Sultan left a dent on the heavy bag. 

The former rivals turned friends are doing well preparing for their next fights, particularly Sultan as he would be battling unbeaten Puerto Rican Carlos Caraballo on Saturday, October 30 (Sunday, October 31, Philippine time) at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

Caraballo should pose a threat as he has knocked out all of his 14 opponents thus far.

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Sultan’s record (17-5, 11 knockouts) pales in comparison, but the proud Zamboangueno has tangled with elite fighters like Johnriel Casimero, the current World Boxing Organization bantamweight champion, and Ancajas, the longtime International Boxing Federation super flyweight king.

Sultan bested Casimero in 2017 for the right to challenge Ancajas, who then beat him by unanimous decision in 2018.

Ancajas now serves as Sultan’s main sparring partner and top supporter as they are both training under Joven Jimenez at Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood.

According to Jimenez, Sultan is almost in peak form and is already in the tapering stage of his preparations for what should be his breakout performance in the United States.

“He (Sultan) is good to go,” said Jimenez in Filipino. “But he would not do it in a hurry. He’ll have to find his rhythm and right timing before bringing the fight to Caraballo.”

Jimenez added they will begin controlling Sultan’s food intake on Monday since he has still 12 pounds to shed off.

Joining Jimenez in Sultan’s corner will be Ancajas, promoter Brendan Gibbons, and Junnie Navarro, who co-manages Sultan with Mike Venezuela of MLV Accounting in Australia. Sultan is also being supported by House Deputy Speaker Mikee Romero of Globalport 900, Inc.

For now, Ancajas is content on helping Sultan in his workouts and sparring with all-comers who dared to test his skill and power.

These include unbeaten Jalan Walker (9-0-1, 8 knockouts) and 11-time US national champion Steven Navarro, a 17-year-old wonder.

Navarro showed latent talent and skills but got dropped when Ancajas caught him with body blows.

MP (Manny Pacquiao) Promotions president Sean Gibbons is still looking for the best deal available for Ancajas’ 10th title defense. High on Ancajas’ wish list is unification with WBO counterpart Kazuto Ioka in Japan in December. –