Nonito Donaire-Naoya Inoue bantamweight showdown set for November
MANILA, Philippines—Nonito Donaire gets the chance to become the best bantamweight when he takes on Japan’s Naoya Inoue for the 118-lb Ali Trophy in the finals of the World Boxing Series at Saitama Arena on November 7.
Inoue is the top bantamweight in The Ring Magazine’s ratings holding The Ring and the IBF World bantamweight titles while Donaire is the WBA Super World bantamweight champion.
Coincidentally, Inoue is also the WBA’s “regular” bantamweight champion.
“Inoue has proved why he is called the Monster, he is a freak of nature, his power from another planet, and the already iconic Donaire, who produced one of the knockouts of the year in his semi-final, is looking as strong as ever in the twilight of his career,” said Kalle Sauerland of Comosa AG, the organizer of the World Boxing Series in a report on Boxingscene.
“What a duel, what a conclusion, and what an arena. We simply can’t wait to see who of these gladiators will lift the Ali Trophy on Nov. 7.”
Inoue (18-0) won 16 of his fights via knockout and his total fight time in the tournament is 5 minutes and 29 seconds.
Donaire (40-5), who’s also the WBA Diamond champion, has held World titles in four weight classes and is coming off a sixth round knockout victory against Stephon Young in the semifinals of the tournament.
“I can’t wait for the final. Donaire to me is a legend in the sport of boxing and I am honored to be sharing the ring with him in the final,” said Inoue. “But I will do my very best to win against the legend to claim the Ali Trohpy.”
Donaire is 10 years older than the 26-year-old Inoue and he expressed his confidence going up against the younger fighter.
“I am looking forward to the final in Japan and a great fight,” said Donaire. “I have fought several World champions, and I will come well prepared. Inoue is an amazing fighter but I saw flaws in his semifinal, and I think I can definitely create a game plan against him and win the Ali Trophy.”