Pinoy Pride 27 card under way in Dubai
DUBAI—The country’s fast-rising boxing series makes its initial splash overseas when ALA promotions and television partner ABS-CBN host Pinoy Pride 27 Friday at World Trade Center here.
Young stars Genesis “Azukal” Servania and “King” Arthur Villanueva stake their undefeated records after both fighters sailed through Thursday’s weigh-in. Also making the weight was veteran Rey “Boom Boom” Bautista, who tries to return to his once lofty status when he battles a tough Mexican.
Servania (24-0, 10 KOs) puts his WBO super bantamweight title on the line against Mexican Jose “Matador” Cabrera and vows to amp up the already searing heat in this oil-rich Middle East destination with a performance to remember.
“I trained hard for this fight. I’m not really expecting to knock my opponent out but if the opportunity is there, I’ll take it,” said Servania, who came in at 121.4.
Cabrera (22-4-2, 10 KOs) was on the dot of the 122-lb bantamweight limit.
Bautista will share the main card with Servania. The 28-year-old Bautista (35-3-0, 25 KOs) battles Mexican Juan Jose “Piquet” Martinez (19-1-0, 15 KOs) and plans to put on a show for OFWs here.
“It’s hot here but it will be hotter on the ring,” vowed Bautista, who climbed the scales at 129. Martinez made the weight after shedding off the extra pound he registered for the super featherweight (130 lb).
Villanueva will fight in the main supporting bout and takes on Nicaraguan Henry “El Crespo” Maldonado with his IBF International junior bantamweight title at stake.
In Thursday’s weigh-in at Rocky’s Bar, Villanueva checked in at 114.6 lb, while Maldonado was a shade over the 115-lb limit and needed to shed off a fraction of a pound.
After making waves by touring the country, ALA Promotions decided to lift the curtains off an international edition.
“This was something that we really wanted when we launched Pinoy Pride, that we would go international,” said ALA CEO Michael Aldeguer. “Filipinos here, they’re really excited for events like this.”
“This was a dream a year ago but we’ve finally reached this point,” said ABS-CBN sports consultant Peter Musngi.
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