Sports: Sabillo Roars With 18th Victory; Forces Refugio to retire in round 7
A superior training regimen was one of the factors for the undefeated Negrense Merlito "Tiger" Sabillo in defending his Oriental Pacific Boxing Federation mini-flyweight belt during the ALA Promotions’ boxing spectacular "Pride of Negros" held at the La Proa Ballroom of L’ Fisher Hotel in Bacolod City last Friday.
The Tiger instinct of Sabillo unleashed its final fury in the 7th round forcing Jonathan Refugio to kneel on the canvas and finally retired with 2:36 in the seventh round. A flurry of body punches took its toll for the 18-year old challenger from Malaybalay, Bukidnon and shook his head while international referee Samson Libres was administering the mandatory 8-count.
Refugio came out aggressive in the early rounds by giving the champion several combinations. However, Sabillo started to initiate a number of heavy counters in the middle towards the seventh round that reversed the momentum of the game.
In a prost interview with Sabillo, the champion stressed that he is happy that he successfully defended his belt.
Meanwhile, Escalante City-born Melvin Gumban did not also fail his fellow Negrense after dethroning erstwhile Philippine Boxing Federation super flyweight champion Nelson "The Giant Killer" Llanos of Davao via a unanimous decision. His victory improved his record to 8 wins
Both fighters bravely fought toe-to-toe from the opening round until the final bell sounded. Llanos suffered a swelling hematoma on his left forehead caused by the heavy punches from Gumban since the early second round.
However, the newly-crowned champion Gumban also got a cut just above his left eyebrow in the fourth round. He was advised twice by referee-in-charge Dan Nietes to have his wound checked by ring physician Dr. Francis Balsomo.
But judges saw Gumban to have dominated more rounds than Llanos. Judges scored the fight 97-92, 96-93, and 98-91.
Other undercard results: Bacoleño Juren Labordo defeated Davaeño Anastacio Gallardo via unanimous in a 4-rounder fight of 112 pounds division.
Other results: Top Prime Stable’s Louie Arlos won by UD over Tagbilaran City’s Lito Dante in the 108 lbs, while Rey Morales of Himamaylan City also scored a UD victory over Bukidnon’s Kheriel Gonlibo in a 4-rounder fight of 112 pounds division the 12.
The event is sanctioned by the Games and Amusement Board headed Bacolod Office chief Jovencio "Boy" Paroco and Chairman Juan Ramon "Monju" Guanzon.*