After Oubaali, Donaire targets Inoue rematch

Published May 29, 2021, 7:54 PM

by Carlo Anolin

Nonito Donaire sits comfortably while answering questions from the press ahead of his world title bout against WBC bantamweight champion Nordine Oubaali. (Showtime Boxing)

If he comes out successful against WBC bantamweight titleholder Nordine Oubaali, Filipino four-division world boxing champion Nonito Donaire won’t be looking too far regarding his future plans as he seeks a rematch against Japanese icon Naoya Inoue, the IBF and super WBA king of the weight division.

“[I want] the best out there. I want a rematch with Inoue and get all the belts…,” said Donaire during a press conference ahead of his title bout against the Frenchman. “Get the belt and put ’em all together.”

The goal would depend, however, on the result if he would end up winning against Oubaali on Saturday (Sunday, Manila time) at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California.

READ: ‘Filipino Flash’ Donaire challenges Oubaali for WBC title

And the “Filipino Flash” is not about to underestimate his undefeated foe and vowed to focus on the present for now before catching up with his goals.

Besides, at 38, Donaire is confident to defy age and time over and over with his great physical and mental conditions.

READ: Racing against time, Donaire focuses on mental health

“I have big respect for Nordine and I will never underestimate anyone who comes inside that ring with me,” added Donaire, who holds a 40-6 record on top of 26 knockouts. “So this is my fight now and this is where I focus. And this is why I trained for and it’s all gonna be in my head.”

It would be recalled that Donaire suffered a unanimous decision against Inoue in November 2019 at the Super Arena in Saitama, Japan which won the 2019 Fight of the Year award.

Coincidentally in the same event, Oubaali, 34, scored a UD victory over Naoya’s younger brother Takuma to improve at 17-0 slate with 12 KOs.

Donaire, a future Hall of Famer who has multiple Fighter of the Year and Knockout of the Year honors, hopes to ignite his seasoned boxing career by making it to the top once more.

READ: Donaire banks on power over Oubaali’s technicality

Should he win, Donaire will mark history by breaking the record of compatriot and boxing great Gerry Peñalosa as the oldest boxer to win a bantamweight belt. Peñalosa was 36 when he knocked out Mexican Jhonny Gonzales in 2007.

A different scenario in line would be a title shot against the winner between WBA (regular) bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux and WBO king John Riel Casimero.