By Dennis Principe
Photo: Chris Farina/Top Rank
Filipino world flyweight title challenger Milan Melindo claims he is a more experienced fighter against his upcoming opponent Juan Francisco Estrada of Mexico, holder of the World Boxing Organization (WBO) and World Boxing Association (WBA) flyweight belts. This despite the fact that this will only be Melindo’s first ever attempt at a world title while Estrada will be appearing in his third world championship. After losing a close 12-round decision WBA light flyweight bout to champion Roman Gonzalez of Nicaragua last November, Estrada accepted the challenge of world flyweight champion Brian “Hawaiian Punch” Viloria last April in Macau.
According to the 25-year-old Melindo, he worked all the way up to the number one spot of the world rankings by taking on former world champions and ex-title challengers in racking up an unblemished record of 29-0 with 12 stoppages. “He was a choice opponent by Viloria. I am a mandatory challenger. He is only a world champion when he wears those belts but inside the ring, he is just an ordinary fighter,’ Melindo told this writer.
Estrada will stake his unified titles against Melindo as part of the “Fists of Gold II” card headlined by two-time Olympic gold winner Zou Shiming opposite Mexican Jesus Ortega Saturday night at the Cotai Arena of the Venetian Hotel here in Macau.
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