Boxing champion Charly Suarez may have left the national team to turn pro but the hunger and desire to bring honor to the country remains in him.
“Hindi naman nawawala yun kagustuhan natin na makapag-bigay ng karangalan sa ating bansa. Nasa dugo na talaga ng bawat atletang Pilipino yun,” said Suarez when asked about his decision to turn pro during the 19th “Usapang Sports” by the Tabloids Organization in Philippine Sports (TOPS) at the National Press Club in Intramuros recently.
In fact, the 30-year-old veteran of the Rio Olympics is now hoping to bring more honors to the country when he takes on Waldu Sabu of Indonesia for the interim World Boxing Council Asian super featherweight title on May 10 at the Davao del Norte Provincial Cultural Sports Center in Tagum City.
Suarez did not predict a quick ending but vowed to beat the younger Indonesian champion in front of his own province mates in Tagum.
“Magaling din yun kalaban, lalo na may na-knockout na din syang dalawang Pilipino. Pero maganda naman ang kundisyon ko ngayon at puspusan ang ensayo under my coach-trainer Delfin Boholst,” said Suarez.
“Yun knockout, darating yan. Basta timing. Napag-aralan na din naman namin yung mga weakness nya (Sabu),” added Suarez.
Suarez, who rose to prominence by winning the gold medal in the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon and golds in the Southeast Asian Games in 2009 and 2011, also claimed the experiences he had as an amateur fighter under the Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines (ABAP) made him a lot tougher in the international ring.
The pride of San Isidro, Davao del Norte, who is now fighting under the Mabuhay Promotions of owner-founder Jilson Basang, made his pro debut when he knocked out Ernesto Cagampang in Cagayan de Oro last Jan. 16, 2019.
He followed it up with another knockout victory over Justin Cabarles to win the vacant MinProBA lightweight crown also in Davao del Norte last March 5.
Boholst, a former national boxer himself who trained in the National Strength and Conditioning Association in the United States, expressed confidence that Suarez is ripe for a crack at the world lightweight title currently held by Vasyl Lomachenko of Ukraine or the super featherweight title now being held by Miguel Berchelt of Mexico.
“Handang-handa na si Charly sa mabibigat na laban. Yun experience nya , as an amateur, nandun na. Mabilis na sya mag-adopt sa laban. Matagal na din sya sa boxing,” said Boholst, who also worked in the corners of reigning IBF super-flyweight champion Jerwin Ancajas.
“Sa tingin ko, kung mga 5-6 fights lang, pwede na isabak sa world championship si Charly,” added Boholst.