Draw against Palicte still a bitter pill to swallow for Nietes

Santino Honasan on Sep 13, 2018 04:53 PM
Draw vs. Palicte still a bitter pill to swallow for Nietes
“Syempre, habang-buhay ko siguro dadahlhin yun, kasi alam na alam mo na panalo ka talaga, kahit sa lahat ng manonood, lahat ng viewers, lahat ng mga boxing fans, alam nila na ako talaga panalo.”

In the eyes of many as well as his own, Donnie “Ahas” Nietes should be a four-division boxing world champion.

At SuperFly 3 in Los Angeles last September 8th, Nietes and fellow Negros native Aston “Mighty” Palicte went the distance in their twelve-round co-main event bout for the vacant WBO Super Flyweight World Championship.

While the longer and rangier Palicte did pose problems, Nietes used his experience and movement to - according to the statistics - outbox his younger opponent, leading many to believe that he was on his way to a decision victory.

Instead, two of the three judges had split their scores for Nietes and Palicte, while the third judge had it at a draw, leading to a Split Draw decision, much to the disbelief of the fans, the commentary panel, and of course, Team Nietes.

Hearing the 116-112 card scored for Palicte, let alone the Split Decision ruling came as a massive shock to the ALA Promotions star.

“Gulat na gulat ako,” Nietes told ABS-CBN Sports “Kasi alam ko na lamang na lamang ako eh, medyo nabigla ako nung narinig ko na yun yung score na binigay ng mga judge.”

For reference, the other judge scored it as 118-110 for Nietes, while the third judge saw it as a 114-114 draw.

Always gracious whatever the result, the soft-spoken Nietes said that all he could do was laugh the result off.

Nietes also admitted however, that coming oh so close to a prestigious fourth world championship and then having it take away was a painful experience.

“Wala lang, natatawa lang, parang hindi ako makapani-paniwala kasi yun ang ibinigay ng mga judge,” Nietes shared. “Pero nasaktan din ako kasi siyempre pang-apat na division world championship sana yun eh.” the longest-reigning Filipino boxing world champion admitted, with a crack in his voice.

The fourth world championship would have put him alongside the likes of Manny Pacquiao and Nonito Donaire Jr. as the only Filipino boxers to win world championships in four weight divisions.

“Ayun tinanggap ko na lang, para maka-move on tayo.” Niete added.

It was a bitter pill to swallow for Nietes, who at 36, doesn’t exactly have all the time in the world with regards to his boxing career.

“Syempre, habang-buhay ko siguro dadahlhin yun, kasi alam na alam mo na panalo ka talaga, kahit sa lahat ng manonood, lahat ng viewers, lahat ng mga boxing fans, alam nila na ako talaga panalo.”

Still, Nietes’ debut at 115-pounds had a lot of positives to take home.

Against a very-game adversary in Palicte, Nietes showed that he can hang with the best super flyweights in the game today.

“Maganda naman yung [pakiramdam] ng katawan ko, comfortable naman yung katawan ko as a 115-pounder, kasi during the training namin, talagang pinag-aadjust ko na yung katawan ko for 115, kaya comfortable talaga yung katawan ko sa 115.”

Nietes says that he’s targeting a return to the ring by February of next year, but if a big fight should materialize by the end of 2018, he’s got no qualms about stepping back in the ring again for the third time this year.

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