The thinking man’s pocket warrior Milan “El Metodico” Melindo (21W-0L, 6 KO’s) is in the final stages of his preparation for his highly anticipated fight against former IBF jr. flyweight world champion Carlos “El Olimpico” Tamara (21W-5L, 15 KO’s) of Colombia this November 27. Melindo will even have a new ring moniker for this fight. Instead of “Milenyo”, the name of a devastating typhoon that hit the Philippines a few years back, “Metodico” seems to be better fit as it describes his organized punishing offense.

They will be fighting as flyweights in this ten round non-title fight. Melindo feels more comfortable at 112 lbs after winning regional titles at 105 and 108.

“I would like to thank every one for their continuing support.” Melindo said in a press conference held Monday noon at the SPORTS EXCHANGE BAR AND GRILL in Cebu City. “We did not change anything during training. I trained for three months and we just added a few things.” Melindo’s strength has improved under conditioning coach Pio Solon.

When asked if he feels pressure after his more popular stablemates Rey Bautista and AJ Banal were involved in fights that were anti-climactic and left a lot of dissatisfied fans, Melindo responded with, ”No, I don’t feel any pressure at all. I will just fight the way I fight.”

Melindo and trainer Edito Villamor have reviewed Tamara’s fight against Brian Viloria. Villamor has studied Tamara’s approach and strategy in that dramatic come from behind win. Melindo on the other hand describes his opponent as “Just an ordinary boxer but has incredible stamina, very strong and can take a punch.” He knows Tamara is dangerous in the later rounds.

In his title win last January, Tamara was behind on points before he started his surge after the 8th round. Referee Bruce McTavish stopped the fight in the 12th and final round saving an exhausted Viloria from further punishment. But four months later, Tamara would lose his title by split decision in Argentina to Luis Alberto Lazarte.

ALA Promotions Pres. Michael Aldeguer said that he is not looking beyond Tamara but hinted at the possibility of Melindo getting a title shot if he wons impressively.”

“Tamara has never been knocked out. So, we are expecting a good quality fight.” Aldeguer said. “He will be arriving on the 24th. His team requested to finish their training in the U.S.”

Also attending the press conference were OPBF flyweight champion Rocky Fuentes, who will be defending his title against Inthanon Sithchamuang of Thailand as the co-main event. Fuentes, who hails from Mambaling, Cebu, is excited to be fighting once again in front of his hometown fans. He has fought in Japan three times this year, winning the OPBF crown and beating two tough challengers.

Also fighting in the undercard is former IBF world miniflyweight champ Florante Condes who will fight Kenichi Horikawa of Japan. Condes said he will try his best to give a good fight and continue his quest for another crack at a world crown. Condes beat Indonesian Sofyan Effendi last August by unanimous decision in one sided bout. But the Romblon boxer called “Little Pacquiao” was hesitant in giving a knockout prediction in his third visit to Cebu.

Former three time OPBF champ Randy “Komong Bato” Suico will fight as a welterweight against reigning Philippine welterweight titlist Arnel Tinampay in an eight round non-title fight. Suico will try to bounce back from his split decision loss to Motoki Sasaki in Japan. Suico was feeling pain in his right hand during training and was hesitant in throwing his power punch. “The result was that I was slow in throwing my right during the fight because I couldn’t practice with it. I lost my timing.” he said.

Suico used to fight as an ALA boxer when he was an amateur. He will still be trained under Juanito Ablaca but will begetting input from the ALA trainers.

PINYO PRIDE 2: BEST OF THE BEST will be held at the Waterfront Hotel in Lahug, Cebu City. This fight card is part of ALA Promotions’ continuing effort to promote Cebu as the next world boxing Mecca. They have previously brought to Cebu widely popular boxers like Mexico’s Fernando Montiel and Australia’s Vic Darchinyan. Former two division IBF world champ Luis Perez fought AJ Banal here last month. This January, fans will also see the rematch between Rey Bautista and Alejandro Barrera.

Top photo: (L-R) Randy Suico, Florante Condes, Milan Melindo and Rocky Fuentes headline the ‘Pinoy Pride II’ Boxing event on Nov. 27 at the Waterfront Hotel & Casino in Cebu City.

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