By Nick Giongco
STOCKTON, California — An unbeaten Australian banger dubbed “The Monster” is next in line for Jerwin Ancajas, who scored an emphatic seventh-round knockout win over Japanese mandatory challenger Ryuichi Funai on Saturday night (Sunday morning in Manila) at the Stockton Arena.
Sean Gibbons, the official representative of Ancajas, has started exploratory talks with the Top Rank chief on the proposed showdown with the 28-year-old Moloney, who holds a 19-0-0 win-loss-draw record with 12 KOs.
Ancajas, 28, who raised his mark to 31-1-2 with 21 KOs, was on beast mode against Funai, 33, whose bid officially ended just one second into the seventh when referee Ed Collantes called ring doctor Gary Furness to check on the challenger’s condition.
Furness examined Funai in the neutral corner, shook his head, and motioned to the third man to stop the fight, giving Ancajas his first stoppage win in over a year.
Ancajas had Funai in deep trouble thrice in the fourth round as the Japanese caught countless hard shots to the head and body, turning his legs into rubber.
It looked as though Funai would melt away in the fifth but Ancajas mellowed a bit but stepped up the attack anew in the sixth when another round of bombardment had Funai on wobbly legs.
“Sobrang tibay ni Funai (Funai was very tough),” said Ancajas, admitting that he felt bad for his fallen foe. “Naawa din ako sa kanya (I felt pity for him).”
His face starting to puff up, Funai and his team later dropped by Ancajas’ dressing room to pay his respects but it was Ancajas who appeared as if he was at fault for leaving the gutsy Japanese in a pile of mess.
Now that another fight looms on the horizon, Ancajas is looking forward to defending against Moloney, who is right-handed.
“Napanood ko na si Moloney at nakita ko na undefeated at magaling din. I will prepare hard for him because he is undefeated and is talented,” said Ancajas.
Gibbons is likewise drooling over the Moloney battle as it would guarantee Ancajas a heftier paycheck than the $175,000 he received for mauling Funai.
However, with Ancajas in prime condition, the entire team is confident that Moloney will end up on the receiving end of every Ancajas’ power punches.
Ancajas, who was so pumped up by his showing, gave it a ten.
“Dahil nagawa ko lahat ang gusto kong gawin, masasabi ko na ten itong panalong ito (Because I was able to do what I wanted to, I can say that this win was a ten),” said Ancajas.
Team Ancajas, led by lead trainer Joven Jimenez, is flying back to the Philippines on May 14 after scheduled visits to Los Angeles and Las Vegas.