Reigning World Boxing Organization Asia Pacific super bantamweight champion Juan Miguel Elorde is not giving up on his dream to achieve what other professional Filipino boxers want — to become a world title holder.
Elorde, 31, the grandson of the late boxing icon Gabriel “Flash” Elorde and currently no. 3 in the WBO world ratings, will be battling Thai Ratchanon Sawangsoda in a non-title sixth rounder undercard bout in the Manny Pacquiao-Lucas Matthysse world title fight on July 15 at the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
“I want to have a good record, increase my ratings and at the same time achieve my longtime goal of becoming a world champion someday even one time,” said Elorde in Filipino, who is sporting a 25-1 win-loss record with 13 knockouts. “I believe I still can (becoming world champion).”
Elorde, who already left the country along with his team on Monday for Malaysia, added that he is now in good condition heading to the fight after finishing with a couple of sparring sessions at the Elorde gym in Sucat, Parañaque City.
“I’m excited to fight. This will be my second time to fight in abroad. The last time was I lost the fight so I’m hoping to get back,” added Elorde, referring to his unanimous decision loss to American Jerry Guevara in 2011 as one of the undercards in the Mercito Gesta-Ricardo Dominguez main event card at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, USA.
Elorde’s fight will be the first bout at the Axiata arena at it is scheduled at 7:00 in the morning, Gate opens at 6:00 am.
Sawangsoda, who only lost twice in 14 matches, is not a pushover though since all his 12 wins also came from knockout victories.
Aside from the Pacquiao-Matthysse main event fight and Elorde-Sawangsoda bout, undefeated Jhack Tepora of the Philippines (21-0, 16 KOs) will meet Edivaldo Ortega of Mexico (26-1-1, 12 KOs) for the vacant regular World Boxing Association (WBA) featherweight title.
Chinese Lu Bin (1-0) will face WBA light flyweight champion, Carlos Canizales of Venezuela, while Moruti Mthalane of South Africa (35-2, 24 KOs) will clash with Pakistan’s Muhammad Waseem, (8-0, 6 KOs) for the International Boxing Federation flyweight crown.