As Top Rank promoter, Bob Arum relays his plans for 2016 – it will definitely include WBO/NABF World Bantamweight Champion, Nonito Donaire as one of his fighters that he wants to make a fanstastic year.
“2016 is a big year for our company. Nonito Donaire is a major part of those plans, beginning with the big show in the Philippines,” said Arum as reported by BoxingScene.com.
The 33-year-old Donaire won his last 3 fights, one of which was with Cesar Juarez in which he won the WBO Bantamweight Championship.
“We were very, very proud of the way Nonito won the world title in his last fight,” said Arum.
“Everyone thought he was going to knock the kid out when he dropped him early, but it turned out to be a hell of a fight, a fight that Nonito survived, won and can now look to the future.
Furthermore, Arum wanted to bring back Donaire to his country to face Evgeny Gradovich from Russia for the WBO Bantamweight Championship in April 23 at the Araneta Coliseum.
“Our plans for him are to have him next fight at the world famous Araneta Coliseum in the Philippines, which 40 years ago of course hosted the “Thrilla in Manila”, (the third fight) between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier. It has undergone major renovation since then, and Nonito (Donaire) will return there to defend his championship.”
Gradovich currently has a 21-1 professional boxing record will have two fights scheduled already for 2016 with the first fight will be held on January 9 in Spain against Jesus Galicia.
On the other hand, Donaire is currently holding a 36-3 fighting record. Donaire had his last fight in Araneta Coliseum and scored a win against William Prado of Brazil back in March 28, 2015. This was his bounce-back win in which his prior fight was lost to Jamaican fighter, Nicholas Walters in the Starhub Center in California, USA.