Fresh from watching the controversial Manny Pacquiao-Timothy Bradley world welterweight title fight in Las Vegas, two-time world champion Gerry Penalosa went up to Baguio to check on the buildup of a Filipino puncher who is gunning for a world title on July 16 in Japan.
Penalosa told InterAKTV that Michael Farenas is going through hell in his high-altitude training camp and can’t wait to face defending World Boxing Association super-featherweight champion Takashi Uchiyama in Saitama.
“Michael is doing very, very well,” said Penalosa.
But Penalosa admits Farenas will have his hands full against Uchiyama, who sports an 18-0 win-loss card with 15 knockouts, and is awed by the Japanese’s fearsome reputation.
“He is a complete fighter,” said Penalosa, who held the super-fly and bantam titles in the late-1990s and in the 2000s. “I saw him fight on video against ten different opponents and he is very good.”
But Penalosa said Uchiyama, despite the abundance of talent, has an Achilles heel.
“He’s got a fragile chin,” noted Penalosa, stressing Uchiyama’s fragile jaw was evidenced in some of the fights that he saw recently.
Farenas, who has a 34-3-3 slate with 25 stoppages, believes he has what it takes to score an upset and Penalosa is upbeat that they can get the job done in stunning fashion.
“Farenas has been waiting for a long time for this chance to fight for a world title and he will not waste the opportunity,” said Penalosa.
The Uchiyama-Farenas showdown will be the main event of a double world championship fight featuring the World Boxing Council fly duel between Filipino champion Sonny Boy Jaro and Japanese challenger Toshiyuki Igarashi.
Akihiko Honda’s Teiken Promotions is holding the fights.
Jaro is also revving up for the first defense of his 112-lb crown in his training camp in Binangonan, Rizal, under the watchful eyes of trainer-manager Aljoe Jaro.