Ancajas ready to face Mexican challenger

Published March 22, 2021, 4:59 PM

by Waylon Galvez

Photo from Top Rank

Waiting for more than a year to get a fight did little to bother International Boxing Federation super flyweight champion Jerwin Ancajas as he takes on Jonathan Javier Rodriguez of Mexico on April 10 at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.

The 29-year-old Ancajas said he also needed to wait in his previous fights particularly when he won the championship against McJoe Arroyo of Puerto Rico back in 2016.

“Hindi na bago sa akin ang maghintay ng matagal na laban (Waiting for a fight this long isn’t new to me),” said Ancajas in an online press conference with fellow boxer Mark Magsayo and MP Promotions President Sean Gibbons, who are all in Los Angeles, California.

“Alam ko na Panginoon ang may plano, hindi ako nawawalan ng pag-asa. Hindi ko (inisip) na baka wala ng laban. Focus lang ako. (I know that the Lord has plans for me, and I don’t lose hope. I’m not thinking about not having a fight. I just focus (on training).”

Originally set November 2019, the fight between the two was moved to April 2020, although Ancajas, Gibbons said, was not able to secure his US Visa. It was reset to September 2020.

However, as Ancajas was about to get an interview for his US Visa in Manila, the country went into a lockdown on March 15, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, Ancajas wasn’t able to leave for the April fight.

It was only in October that Ancajas finally arrived in L.A. and both camps had agreed to reschedule the bout to its final date next month. It will be his first fight with Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) under Al Haymon and to be televised by Showtime.

The last time Ancajas fought was when he knocked out Chile’s Miguel Gonzalez in the sixth round back in December 2019 in Mexico. He fought the Chilean when the bout versus Rodriguez in the US didn’t materialize.

Ancajas improved his ring record to 32 wins with 22 by way of knockout against one loss and two draws. The southpaw has successfully defended the title seven times.

Meantime, unbeaten Filipino featherweight Mark Magsayo (21-0, 14 KOs) is part of the undercard as he takes on American Pablo Cruz (21-3, 6KOs). This is the second time that Magsayo is fighting in the US after a split decision win against Rigoberto Hermosillo of the US.

All the fights set on April 10 (US time) will be shown live April 11 in the Philippines on One Sports and One Sports Plus over Cignal TV.