Moving forward to 2022, Nonito Donaire still has one thing in mind and that is to become an undisputed world boxing champion.
At 39, Donaire remained as the WBC bantamweight champion after knocking out compatriot Reymart Gaballo in the fourth round at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California last Dec. 11.
“Journey to the undisputed,” said Donaire in the recent episode of Playitright TV. “Kung sino man ‘yung [may hawak ng] belt, kukunin ko ‘yon (Whoever has the belt, I will get it). That’s my goal. That’s my purpose and you’ll always see me do my best.”
For the record, the win against Gaballo was Donaire’s first title defense since capturing the WBC belt from Frenchman Nordine Oubaali last May.
Interestingly, the “Filipino Flash” also ended up with a fourth-round knockout against Oubaali.
It was a decade ago, February 19, 2011 to be exact, where the four-division world boxing champion first bagged the WBC and the WBO bantamweight belts with a technical knockout win against Mexican Fernando Montiel.
There is no secret of some sort but Donaire said the reason why he’s able to defy Father time over and over again was because of discipline and passion.
“It’s discipline and the desire to have one mind track of becoming undisputed,” said Donaire, who holds a 42-6 record on top of his 28 KOs. “Kailangan mo talaga ‘yong purpose kasi kapag wala kang purpose sa buhay mo, parang nawawala ka lang. Wala kang daan napupuntahan, ‘di ka sigurado sa pupuntahan mo (You need to have a purpose because without it, you’ll lose yourself. You’ll be unsure of the path that you’re taking).
“My purpose is becoming undisputed and it allowed me to become disciplined in every way possible, ‘di lang sa pagkain, ‘di lang sa training (Not only with food and training). It also disciplined me to take care of myself including my relationship,” added the reigning WBC king.
Currently, Donaire is among the ranks of John Riel Casimero, the WBO titleholder, and Japanese superstar Naoya Inoue, the unified bantamweight champion who has the super WBA, IBF, and The Ring titles.
Inoue, who is still unbeaten in 22 wins and 19 knockouts, recently scored a TKO victory against Thai foe Aran Dipaen for his third straight defense of the three major belts.
Casimero, meanwhile, is expected to make up a decision whether to push the title bout against English opponent Paul Butler.