By James Slater: In winning a big fight in impressive style last night, Filipino star Nonito Donaire set himself up for an even bigger fight. 28-year-old Donaire, the former flyweight and super-flyweight champion, enjoyed a hugely successful return to the bantamweight division in Anaheim, California, as he became the first man to stop Ukraine’s Volodymyr Sydorenko – taking out the 34-year-old former WBA 118-pound champion in less than four-rounds.
“The Filipino Flash” looked incredibly strong and powerful in putting the game but outgunned Sydorenko down three times in total, the final knockdown, in the 4th-round, prompting the third man in the ring to stop the slaughter. Now 25-1(17) (the sole loss coming on points over five-rounds, way back in what was Nonito’s second pro outing), Donaire looks ahead to a mega-fight with superb Mexican Fernando Montiel.
That fight is set for February 19th (venue to be determined, but in the U.S), and Donaire will get the chance to take the WBC and WBO bantamweight belts currently held by the 43-2-2(33) 31-year-old known as “Cochulito.” As great as Donaire looked last night, he will have to put on another flawless performance if he is to defeat the never-stopped Mexican.
Can Donaire become a three-weight ruler next year?
Montiel, rated at number-one in the 118-pound ratings of Ring Magazine (both men enjoy Pound-for-Pound positions in “The Bible”), is as fast as Donaire and he hits just as hard if not harder. This match-up without a doubt has “great fight” written all over it, and it will be very interesting to see how the experts see it going.
Donaire, understandably feeling great after last night’s brutal display of power and speed, says he feels much better as a 118-pounder.
“I feel great,” he said. “This is where I want to be [boxing at 118-pounds]. I never questioned my power. I’m motivated and this is what you get from The Filipino Flash when he is motivated , confident and not afraid to get hit.”
Not that Donaire got hit too much last night! However, against Montiel – who faces countryman Eduardo Garcia in a non-title affair next Saturday night in Mexico – Donaire will almost certainly get hit, and hit hard. A pick ’em fight, Montiel-Donaire could be a classic.
At the moment, though, Donaire is proud of the win he earned last night; referring to the 4th-round TKO as his best performance yet.
“The [Vic] Darchinyan fight was one punch,” Donaire said in reference to his breakthrough 2007 5th-round KO win. “This was by far my best performance.”
And on the upcoming battle with Montiel, Donaire said he is excited about the fight.
“He has a lot of power, but if you can’t hit your target, it’s useless,” he said. “All I can say is it’s going to be a tremendous fight.”
That much looks certain. And if Donaire can win on Feb. 19th, he will be right up there with countryman Manny Pacquiao when it comes to boxing greats who have come out of The Philippines.
In other action:
Miguel Angel Garcia KO 5 Olivier Lontchi
Pawel Wolak TKO 7 Jose Pinzon
Rodrigo Garcia TKO 4 Rodrigo Villarreal
Joe Hanks TKO 4 Villi Bloomfield
Nonito Donaire KO 4 Wladimir Sidorenko
Humberto Soto UD 12 Urbano Antillon