IBF gives Jerwin Ancajas highest honor
MANILA, Philippines – More honors are in store for Jerwin Ancajas.
Following his devastating seventh-round stoppage of Ryuchai Funai in his seventh defense of the super flyweight crown on Saturday, May 4 (Sunday, May 5, Philippine time) in Stockton, California, the International Boxing Federation will bestow on Ancajas its highest award – Jersey Joe Walcott – on May 30 during the IBF Annual Award Banquet at Wynn Palace Cotai Macau.
Ancajas, who wrested the IBF title from Puerto Rican McJoe Arroyo on August 6, 2016, is already the longest reigning 115-pound champion among boxing’s major governing bodies.
In his first 4 title defenses, Ancajas knocked out Mexican Jose Alfredo Rodriguez, Japanese Teiru Kinoshita, Irish Jamie Conland and Mexican Israel Gonzalez.
Atoning for that lackluster showing, Ancajas dominated Funai from the opening bell, putting the Japanese on the brink of a knockout before the ring physician ordered the referee to stop the bout at the start of the 7th round.
From Stockton, Ancajas, chief trainer Joven Jimenez, nutritionist Jeaneth Aro, ring announcer Mark Lontayao and boxer Jerald Deniega proceeded by land to Las Vegas for rest and recreation.
On Wednesday night (Thursday morning in Manila) they were shown arriving at the home of international matchmaker Sean Gibbons, who is in Manila to attend to matters concerning eight-division world champion Manny Pacquiao, in Las Vegas.
They were entertained by Gibbons’ wife, Valerie, and sons Parker and Brendan, who was with Ancajas during the final phase of training in Stockton.
Jimenez assured they will be attending the IBF’s 36th Annual Convention, going to Macau on May 29.
Team Ancajas will return to the Philippines via Los Angeles, arriving early morning of May 14 to a hero’s welcome being spearheaded by the Philippine Navy and Philippine Marines, who call Ancajas and Jimenez as their own.
Top Rank Inc head Bob Arum told Filipino sportswriters at Stockton Arena that Ancajas will next face unbeaten Australian Andrew Moloney in September.
Despite Arum’s announcement, World Boxing Council super flyweight king Juan Francisco Estrada told boxingscene.com on Wednesday he wants a unification title duel with Ancajas.
"I would like to unify with any champion, I want Jerwin Ancajas, the Filipino IBF champion, that is the fight I want, but if there is another champion then why not. The fight with Román González, if he asks for it... and Sor Rungvisai, the third fight, why not? I will do what the team says, we will plan for what follows before going up to bantamweight." – Rappler.com