I don’t want to gloat, but if you’ve been following my boxing reports here on The Finger Post, you’ll have noticed that we were first to predict two of the biggest developments in the lighter weight classes in October.
Well, it’s official. The Thai champion will go for his 49th victory against the Kumamoto native.
Then, on October 9th I speculated that during the WBO 30th Annual Congress we might see Isaac Dogboe or Marlon Tapales take on Cesar Juarez for a WBO interim belt. At the time Juarez was slated to fight Jessie Magdaleno, the WBO junior featherweight champion on November 11th but the fight was scrapped when Magdaleno was forced to bow out with an injury. Well, at the WBO Congress it was announced that Magdaleno would not be ready to defend his title in the near future and that Cesar Juarez would in fact be taking on the next available contender in a bid for the interim title.
And herein lies the real drama, because most likely the October rankings will be decided during the Congress, and nipping at the heels of Tapalas is the WBO #3 ranked contender, undefeated Isaac Dogboe from Ghana.
If the WBO concurs with Cesar Juarez and decides to allow Juarez to fight the next available contender for the interim title (and that’s a big if) they could end up going with Dogboe, who last fought for the WBO International Title back in July (Tapales has not fought since April in a defense of his WBO bantamweight title, as has yet to fight at 122-pounds). This in turn could force Tapales to take an ill-advised November 11th fight…if he thinks Dogboe may leapfrog over him in the world rankings during the WBO Congress.
Now Tapales is a road warrior (his last three fights were in hostile territory, and two of them were world title fights) so I am sure if anyone in boxing could and would take a world title fight on two weeks notice against a Cesar Juarez, it is Tapales. But don’t rule out Team Dogboe just yet.
Regardless of how things pan out, the last day of the WBO Congress will undoubtedly be a nail-biter for boxing fans in the Philippines and Ghana both.