Boxing: Passing of the torch?

By Abac Cordero,

MANILA, Philippines — New ring sensation Jerwin Ancajas appears to be in the same mold as eight-time world champion Manny Pacquiao in the early stage of the Filipino boxing icon’s career.

Ancajas is being groomed as the next Filipino great champion following his 10th round stoppage over Mexican Israel Gonzalez.

The Panabo, Davao del Norte native was so impressive as he unleashed deadly combinations and searing lefts that brought to mind the exploits of Pacquiao, who also started out as a flyweight.

World boxing champion Jerwin Ancajas and former WBC titlist Manny Pacquiao. Photo: Wendell Rupert Alinea

Pacquiao himself congratulated Ancajas and wished him more success in his future fights.

“I wish to congratulate him for his latest ring victory,” said Pacquiao from General Santos City yesterday.

“I’m happy for his successful defense of the IBF crown. I wish him more success,” added Pacquiao, who watched Sunday’s fight on TV.

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Pacquiao was one of those who congratulated the champ from the Senate. The others were Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III and Sen. Joel Villanueva.

Ancajas retained his IBF super-flyweight crown with a 10th round TKO of Gonzalez at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas Saturday.

It was his fourth defense of the 115-pound title, all of them on foreign soil, from Macau, Bribane and Belfast to Texas.

People have started to compare Ancajas to Pacquiao.

There’s great similarity between them – off the ring as men who came from poor, humble beginnings, and in the ring as fierce, skillful fighters. They are both southpaws.

As boxing writer Ryan Songalia said, the young champion “is the first Jerwin Ancajas and not the next Manny Pacquiao.”

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