MEPRANUM DESERVES THE ACCOLADE TOO
By Maloney L. Samaco
Thu, 11 Dec 2008
Lost in the hysteria of a Manny Pacquiao Dream Match victory over Oscar de la Hoya was the marvelous triumph of Maasim, Sarangani boxer Richie Mepranum.
Still jittery from jetlag because he arrived in Las Vegas after a 13-hour flight from Manila, barely three days before the fight, Mepranum, like his idol Pacquiao, overcame the underdog status he had in the shimmering boxing ring of MGM Grand Arena. He carved out a six-round unanimous decision over his more experienced foe.
He won the World Boxing Organization (WBO) Oriental flyweight title over previously unbeaten Tanzanian Juma Fundi. He was once a Philippine Boxing Federation flyweight champion. These credentials earned him a ticket to Las Vegas, Nevada to face Cesar Lopez of El Paso, Texas.
Coming from an underprivileged family, Richie?s dream of fighting in the big time came during that eventful Dream Match. He has a three-year contract with Top Rank Promotions which could be extended with an outstanding performance in the ring.
As an amateur boxer, Mepranum was a 9-time gold medalist in the invitational and national boxing tournaments he participated in. He was ably managed by Maasim Mayor Jojo Lopez who was instrumental in convincing Pacman to include his fighter in the undercard of the celebrated Dream Match.
A splendid welcome awaits the local boxing hero upon his return to the Municipality of Maasim and the Province of Sarangani. Being the only Filipino boxer to fight in the preliminaries of the world famous Pacman-de la Hoya match, and beating his opponent convincingly against the odds, Mepranum also deserves a national recognition. Next in his agenda is the hope to fight for a world championship.
Click here to view a list of other articles written by Maloney L. Samaco.
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