On Mother's Day, Mark Barriga dismantles his foe for ailing mama
MANILA, Philippines – Mark Barriga made Mother's Day extra special for his mama.
Barriga became the mandatory challenger for the International Boxing Federation (IBF) minimumweight title after dominating Gabriel Mendoza in a unanimous decision win on Sunday, May 13, and watching along the sidelines is mother Melita.
It was no question "Da Baby Boy" dedicated his bout to his mother, who, after Barriga's 8 professional fights, watched for the first time.
"Mama, happy Mother's Day, alam mo naman, sinabi ko sayo bago nag-start 'yung laban na para sa iyo 'to. Para sa panggamot mo," he said.
(Mama, happy Mother's Day. You knew from the start that this fight is for you. This is for your medication.)
According to Barriga, his mom is suffering from a heart ailment and swelling in the liver and a part of his earnings in boxing is dedicated to her regular medication.
"Kahit ako ang maghirap sa ring, gagawin ko lahat para mapabuti lang 'yung magulang ko, nanay ko."
(It doesn't matter if I experience hardships aboive the ring as long as I make life better for my parents, for my mother.)
Mrs. Barriga last watched his son fight back when the 24-year-old was still an amateur representing the Philippines in the 2012 London Olympics.
Not that she doesn't support his son's career, it's just that she's afraid if ever something bad happens.
But Mrs. Barriga didn't have much to worry about as his son outclassed his Colombian foe, earning scores of 120-108, 120-108 and 119-109 from the judges in the bout that served as the main event for ESPN5 Live Boxing's Survival Instinct.
The win propelled the pride of Panabo City as the top contender for the IBF belt, which is currently held by Japanese champion Hiroto Kyoguchi.
"Sobrang importante 'to sa akin dahil nga ito 'yung pinakaunang beses na manood si mama sa pro box career ko at gusto ko wala siyang naiisip na iba kundi mag-enjoy lang sa ginagawa ko," said Barriga.
(This fight is very important to me because this is the first time in my professional career that my mother watched me and I just wanted her to see that I enjoy doing this.)
Barriga will fly to the US to support Survival Camp stablemate Jerwin Ancajas, who will defend his IBF super flyweight title against compatriot Jonas Sultan on May 26 in Fresno, California. – Rappler.com