Pagara out to impress in first fight under MTK

·2 min read

ALBERT Pagara wants to make a good impression on his new handlers by putting on an impressive performance in his first fight under MTK Global and D4G Promotions.

The 26-year-old Pagara is up against tough veteran Virgil Puton in an eight-round fight at a contracted weight of 128 pounds in the main event of the first of the two-part boxing show promoted by Omega Pro Sports International on Dec. 18 at the IPI Compound in Mandaue City, Cebu.

“It’s my first time fighting a Pinoy after a long time,” Pagara told SunStar Cebu. “He’s a good fighter. I will not take him lightly.”

The last time Pagara fought a fellow Filipino was in 2013 in a tune-up fight against Gadwin Tubigon in the main event of ALA-Cobra “Tunay na Lakas” show in Dumaguete City. He beat Tubigon via a lopsided unanimous decision.

Puton, 31, is an experienced fighter that has faced the likes of former world champion Masayuki Ito, Paul Fleming, Ibrahim Balla, Charly Suarez and Dave Peñalosa. He went 1-3 in 2019 and is coming off a first round technical knockout defeat in the hands of Peñalosa.

“I was the one who chose the 128-pound limit because I have been out of the ring for a year,” Pagara said. “I won’t force myself to cut down in weight abruptly. But after this fight, I’ll be back fighting at 122 in February.”

Pagara has not started sparring yet because he’s more focused on trimming down in weight and his conditioning after being out for a while. He’ll be looking for sparring at the Phil-Aust Boxing Gym of Edcel Tuñacao, where he could be sparring with the likes of KJ Cataraja, Jeo Santisima, Michael Romarate and Peñalosa.

“We focused first on our stamina and conditioning. My skills are still there,” he said.

Pagara last saw action on Aug. 17, 2019 in Ormoc City. He stopped Thai Ratchanon Sawangsoda in a single round. Pagara is 32-1 with 23 knockouts, while Puton is 18-14-2 with nine knockouts. (EKA)