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Nonito Donaire Faces Toughest Challenge Yet

Let's hope he knocks out this Japanese tough guy
by Gelo Gonzales | Oct 12, 2012
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Reigning unified WBO and IBF super bantamweight champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire (29-1-0, 18 KOs) will defend his titles against Japan’s Toshiaki Nishioka (39-4-3, 24 KOs) this Sunday in what could be the biggest and toughest challenge of his career.

Donaire is currently ranked by Ring Magazine as the fifth best pound-for-pound fighter in the world and its third best super bantamweight. Tishioka, on the other hand, ranks first in Ring Magazine’s list of super bantamweights, which means that their fight will also be for the prestigious Ring Magazine title.

End the year with a bang
For Donaire, facing Nishioka will be all about ending this year with a bang. Donaire has fought and won twice this year but he failed to score knockouts in both fights. He first defeated Wilfredo Vasquez for the WBO title via split decision back in February. He followed it up by upending the IBF title-holder, Jeffrey Mathebula, last July.

Donaire was scary when he campaigned in the flyweight and super flyweight divisions but his power has yet to translate to knockout wins in the super bantamweight division. In this fight, only a knockout will be enough for him. When he was still a flyweight champion, Donaire already professed his dream of becoming an undisputed champion and a win over Nishioka will bring the dream closer to reality.

Rusty? Has been? Neither.
Nishioka has been off from the sport of boxing for well over a year. After a breakthrough a win against the legendary Rafael Marquez late last year, Nishioka decided to rest his weary body and stay off the ring until the best possible match comes along.

Some quarter feel that Nishioka has already seen his best years. There are also people who think that he’d be terribly rusty after a year of not stepping into the ring. However, we think that neither will be problems for Nishioka. Japanese fighters are incredibly durable. Even if he is already 36 years old, Nishioka does not fight like an old man, and will be fresh after having stayed off the ring until this fight against Donaire came along.

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