Philippine-American Nonito ‘The Filipino Flash’ Donaire feels well prepared and looks forward to his World Boxing Super Series 118lb Semi-Final against South Africa’s WBO Champ Zolani Tete at the Cajundome in Lafayette, LA, USA on April 27.
“Lafayette, Louisiana is definitely going to be an experience,” said Donaire, a native of the Philippines who moved to the Bay Area in California at the age of 10 and today lives and trains in Las Vegas.
“There is so much culture all over the United States and I am I’m blessed to be in a tournament that allows me to visit a different state. I’ve heard the food is amazing and I can’t wait to try it out after the fight.”
36-year-old Donaire is perhaps the biggest name in the star-studded WBSS Season 2 line-up having held eight world titles by the main four boxing sanctioning bodies. Known as “The Filipino Flash” due to exceptionally hand speed and extraordinary punching power.
The former multiple-time world champion in four weight classes and current WBA Super Bantamweight Champion came down from 126lb to compete at 118lb for the first time in seven years to enter the WBSS.
In the quarter-final in Glasgow, Scotland Nov. 3rd last year against Northern Ireland’s Ryan Burnett, tournament No. 1 seed, Donaire felt he was in control and would have taken home the victory in the normal fashion if his opponent hadn’t been forced to retire after four rounds with a lower back injury.
How is the training going, can you give us some insight from your training camp?
“Training started about two weeks after the Burnett fight. We didn’t know when the fight would be scheduled but we knew the opponent so we stayed head on for Tete. I implemented new training methods that we haven’t tried before and have had a smooth training camp in Las Vegas.”
How would you describe your shape and preparations compared to your last fight?
“I believe the major difference is building upon what we had in the Burnett fight. I made sure to continue to stay disciplined with my diet and continue to be at the gym. As I said, it wasn’t completely 100% boxing throughout and we did implement training outside of the boxing gym and different drills as well. We made sure to have rest when needed so we could turn it up in these last couple weeks.”
How do you see the match-up with Tete?
“Tete is a formidable opponent. He is tall, he is fast, he is slick, but I am a fighter that can fight any kind of style. I can’t wait to the to show the crowd what we’ve been working on.”
Tickets starting at $25 for the WBSS Super-Lightweight and Bantamweight Semi-Finals on April 27 at the Cajundome in Lafayette, LA are available from TicketMaster here.
Fans in the U.S. and Canada can watch all the Ali Trophy semi-finals LIVE, exclusively on DAZN.
WBSS Season 2 Semi-Finals:
27 April – Cajundome, Lafayette, LA, USA
Regis Prograis vs Kiryl Relikh
Nonito Donaire vs Zolani Tete
18 May – The SSE Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland
Josh Taylor vs Ivan Baranchyk
Naoya Inoue vs Emmanuel Rodriguez
15 June – Arena Riga, Riga, Latvia
Mairis Briedis vs Krzysztof Glowacki
Yunier Dorticos vs Andrew Tabiti