Magsayo out to prove that he’s PH next star

·2 min read

WORLD Boxing Council (WBC) featherweight champion Mark Magsayo is out to prove that he’s the Philippines’ next big star as trades leathers with Mexican former world champion Rey Vargas in a bout of unbeaten fighters on Sunday, July 10, 2022, at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.

Magsayo had a huge breakthrough in his career in 2022 after dethroning long-time WBC featherweight king Gary Russell Jr. by majority decision last Jan. 22 in New Jersey.

“This is a very important fight for me. I already beat Russell, but I just want to keep proving myself. We’re both going to go in there very confident in ourselves and that’s going to make it a great fight,” said Magsayo in the final presser.

Vargas is moving up in weight after dominating the super bantamweight division in his reign as WBC’s champion from 2017 to 2019. The 31-year-old Otumba native won the WBC bantamweight belt with a majority decision over Gavin McDonnell in 2017 in England. He successfully defended his belt five times with wins over Ronny Rios, Oscar Negrete, Azat Hovhannisyan, Frank Manzanilla and former world champion Tomoki Kameda.

After a two-year hiatus, Vargas returned to the ring, this time as a featherweight, and beat Leonardo Baez via unanimous decision.

Despite Vargas’ credentials, Magsayo isn’t at all bothered by it.

“I hope Rey Vargas doesn’t run too much, so we can give a good fight to the people,” said Magsayo.

Fighting at the Alamodome is very special for Magsayo because that’s the venue where his idol Manny Pacquiao first beat Marco Antonio Barrera in 2003. That was also the day that an eight-year-old Magsayo, who was selling ice cream in the streets of Tagbilaran City, first saw Pacquiao fight on TV shown at the newly opened ALA Gym in Bohol. The following day, Magsayo quit selling ice cream and pursued boxing.

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