Puspusan ang pagsasanay ngayon ni WBC super bantamweight champion emeritus Toshiaki Nishioka ng Japan para sa pinakamalaking laban sa kanyang buhay laban kay WBO at IBF junior featherweight champion Nonito “Filipino Flash” Donaire sa Oktubre 13 sa Home Depot Center, Carson, California sa United States.
Nagpasiklab si Nishioka sa kanyang huling laban nang idepensa ang kanyang WBC super bantamweight title kay three-time world champion Rafael Marquez ng Mexico na tinalo niya sa 12-round unanimous decision noong Oktubre 1, 2011 sa Las Vegas, Nevada bago binitiwan ang kanyang titulo.
Aminado ang Hapones na pinakamalaking laban niya ang pagharap kay Donaire na itinuturing niyang No. 1 boxer sa kanilang dibisyon makaraang talunin ang mga kampeong pandaigdig na sina Omar Andres Narvaez ng Argentina, Wilfredo Vasquez Jr. ng Puerto Rico at Jeffrey Mathebula ng South Africa.
“I have waited for this fight to happen for a year, it is the biggest fight of my career, and I’m very excited and can’t wait to face him in the ring,” sinabi ni Nishioka kay boxing writer Masatoshi Ueda ng Boxing Insider. “Donaire has everything what it takes to be one of the best fighter, and he may not have won by KO (knockout) since moving up to 122, but he has been winning his fights. That is very impressive.”
“I’ve never thought of it (Donaire bout) before, but coming to think of it maybe it was. I first met Donaire here at Teiken gym in Tokyo last summer. Then at my fight with Marquez in Las Vegas, he was taking photos of my fight at ringside,” pahayag ni Nishioka. “We also met in a restaurant in California, and in the ring after Donaire’s fight against Mathebula. And just as I thought he would be fighting Jorge Arce for his next fight, all of a sudden, I was the one fighting him. Yes, it’s funny if you look back at it.”
Sinabi din ng Hapones na binitiwan na niya ang WBC super bantamweight crown na natamo niya noong 2008 at pitong beses naipagtanggol sa hangaring magkaroon ng laban kay Donaire na nagbibigay sa kanya ng motibasyon. “I wasn’t injured or anything. After I fought Rafael Marquez, I wanted to fight somebody that will motivate me. Donaire is a fighter who is one of the top names on the pound for pound list, and a figure of the sport,“ giit ni Nishioka. “That’s the kind of fighter I wanted to face. At this point of my career, I didn’t want to just defend my title with anybody.
That’s why I gave up my regular title to be Emeritus champion so that I wasn’t forced to defend the title. My impression of Donaire hasn’t changed. He was fast, strong, and a all-round fighter that I had seen on TV.“ Nagpapasalamat si Nishioka sa pahayag ni Donaire na isa siya sa pinakamahusay ngayon sa super bantamweight division at gagawin niya ang lahat para patunayan ito.
“I’m honored that he thinks of me that way. I also respect Donaire as the best in the 122 division, and I hope to put on a great fight together with two of the best fighters in the division. I will fight with all my heart, and give everything I have in the ring,“ dagdag ni Nishioka.
“It’s a fight you can’t miss with two of the best fighters in the world fighting for the top of the super bantamweight and to be the king of the division. One thing I’m sure of is that it’s going to be an exciting fight.“ – Gilbert Espeña