Multi-weight boxing legend Nonito Donaire is pushing harder in camp, knowing a massive challenge awaits him in the form of Naoya Inoue this November.
‘The Filipino Flash’ faces Inoue in the final of the World Boxing Super Series in a bid to become the number one in the division and claim the coveted Muhammad Ali Trophy.
Donaire won his quarter-final, as tournament No 1. seed Ryan Burnett was forced to retire from after four rounds of action due to a lower back injury.
And the 36-year-old scored a stunning one-punch 6th round knockout of American Stephon Young in the semi-final. A devastating left hook put Young down and out – after the original opponent, Zolani Tete, had to pull out with a shoulder injury only days before the bout.
Donaire said before watching Inoue’s semi-final against Emmanuel Rodriguez: “Inoue has always supported me in this tournament. We have an unspoken thing that we wanted to face each other in the final.”
On November 7 at the Saitama Super Arena, one of the largest indoor arenas in the world, just north of Tokyo, it’s Judgement Day for the ‘Monster’ and Donaire.
“I am looking forward to the final in Japan and a great fight,“ said Donaire. “I have fought several world champions and I will come well prepared.
“Inoue is an amazing fighter, but I saw flaws in his semi-final. I think I can definitely create a game plan against him and win the Ali Trophy.
“This fight is against one of the best fighters in the world,” added the WBC Diamond and WBA ‘Super’ World Bantamweight Champion.
“To see where my career has been and what people have said about where I am. Coming back to the division it inspires me, it motivates me, but most of all it excites me. This is where I want to be,” Donaire concluded.