THE Villamor brothers, Edito and Edmund Villamor, want to continue the legacy of the famed ALA Boxing Gym and its founder Antonio Lopez Aldeguer by starting their own boxing gym that will focus on the grassroots.
“Yes, that is the plan because sir ALA gave away the equipment from the ALA Gym. He also gave equipment to Donnie (Nietes), Albert (Pagara), Kevin (Cataraja), Z Gorres and others. The equipment from the gym have unforgettable memories and should not be sold. Edmund and I have plans to start our own gym, of course, with the blessing of Sir ALA and Sir Mike (Aldeguer),” Edito told SunStar Cebu.
Edito and Edmund were given one of the rings and some of the equipment from the now-defunct ALA Boxing Gym. They plan to build their own small boxing gym in Pagsabungan, Mandaue City.
“We will open our gym in Pagsabungan, Mandaue. We have the support of the Brgy. Captain Bubbles Suson,” said Edito.
The ALA Boxing Gym ceased operations just last August after 35 years being one of the leading boxing gyms in the country. The ALA Boxing Gym was founded by Aldeguer in 1985. At first, it was a small gym that trained underprivileged kids to become amateur boxers. It later became one of the best boxing gyms and the breeding ground for world champions like Gerry Peñalosa, Malcolm Tuñacao, Rodel Mayol, Donnie Nietes and Milan Melindo.
“Sir ALA advised us to continue to train kids for the love of boxing,” said Edito, one of the first generation of ALA Boys.
“We are going to focus on the kids for now. So that they’ll stay away from drugs. We are also willing to train other kids from neighboring barangays if they are interested in boxing.”
Edito believes that he’ll never achieve what Aldeguer has done for Philippine boxing. However, he’ll try to continue Aldeguer’s vision and goal, 35 years ago, of developing kids to become future boxing world champions.
“We will never be able to do what Sir ALA has done. For us, we will just train kids and enjoy our passion with boxing,” he said. “That’s our purpose, to continue his legacy.” (EKA)