by Nick Giongco
FRESNO, California – Jerwin Ancajas gave himself a low grade following his fifth defense of the International Boxing Federation (IBF) junior-bantamweight title Saturday at the Save Mart Center.
“About 7,” said Ancajas, when asked how would he rate (with ten the highest) his unanimous decision win over mandatory challenger Jonas Sultan in their all-Filipino world title fight, the first in almost a century.
Ancajas said he was always on guard for Sultan’s wild counters, noting that it was utterly foolish to engage the challenger in a prolonged exchange.
Ancajas, though dominant all throughout, was unable to floor Sultan.
“Sultan is strong and I only felt that I had the fight under control during the late rounds,” he said.
Joven Jimenez, Ancajas’ trainer, has a different version.
While he was confident that Ancajas was the better fighter, Jimenez believes the fighter who showed up against Sultan was not in peak form.
“Early in the fight, I saw that his punches were slow,” said Jimenez, looking relieved that his fighter didn’t fade.
“He was a bit tired and I was afraid that he would have not finished the fight if I told him not to let up on Sultan,” he said.
Jimenez, who also serves as his manager, revealed that Sultan could have beaten him if they didn’t pace themselves.
“I was telling him to go easy on a few rounds and be content on just scoring because I saw that Sultan was very well prepared and in very good condition.”
Jimenez could not pinpoint the culprit and swears it could be a combination of a lot of things.
And this is the reason Jimenez was reluctant to give his fighter a high mark.
“I just give him a six (out of ten),” he said.
But then again, Sean Gibbons, Ancajas’ US agent, insists what’s vital “is the W.”
The bottom line is that Ancajas piled up the win, said Gibbons.
And that’s the most important thing.