By Nick Giongco
FRESNO, California – Jerwin Ancajas was welcomed by the British fighter promoter Bob Arum wants the Filipino champion to face if he gets past Jonas Sultan in his mandatory defense of the International Boxing Federation (IBF) super-flyweight title on May 26.
Khalid Yafai, the World Boxing Association champion in the 115-lb category, was at the lobby of the Courtyard Marriot when Ancajas and his team arrived Monday after a 360-kilometer road trip from Los Angeles that lasted almost four hours.
After Ancajas was introduced to Yafai (24-0 with 13 KOs), the two shook hands and posed for pictures.
Arum had expressed his desire to pit them for a unification war in late-August or September but for it to happen, they must hurdle their next assignments.
Ancajas has Sultan to contend with while Yafai has David Carmona of Mexico to deal with this weekend at the Save Mart Center.
If they emerge victorious, Arum might proceed with his plan of staging an IBF-WBA showdown.
About 30 minutes after Ancajas (29-1 with 20 KOs) checked in, Sultan (14-3 with nine KOs) also arrived. Brothers Edmond and Edito Villamor, who train Sultan, and three-division champion Donnie Nietes, were with the upset-conscious challenger.
Sultan’s squad also drove from Los Angeles and got reunited with their chief handler Michael Aldeguer, head of ALA Boxing of Cebu.
As this developed, the officials who will work the Ancajas-Sultan match, the first all-Filipino world title fight in almost 100 years, have been assigned: Wayne Hedgpeth (referee) and Jonathan Davis, Daniel Sandoval and Zachery Young (judges).
Hedgpeth will be paid $1,600 while the judges, all from California, will get $1,300 apiece.