Published On: Sat, Apr 27th, 2019

Nonito Donaire undaunted vs new foe in World Boxing Super Series semis

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After Zolani Tete backed out due to an injury, the Filipino four-division world champion will be tangling with reserved fighter Stephon Young

Published 8:57 PM, April 27, 2019

Updated 9:01 PM, April 27, 2019

THE FLASH. Nonito Donaire will defend his WBA super bantamweight crown. File photo by Wendell Alinea/Rappler

THE FLASH. Nonito Donaire will defend his WBA super bantamweight crown. File photo by Wendell Alinea/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines – Facing a new foe doesn’t faze Nonito Donaire a bit.

It only made The Filipino Flash more determined to win on Saturday, April 27 (Sunday, April 28, Philippine time) and advance to the finals of the World Boxing Super Series.

Donaire, a four-division world champion, will be tangling with American Stephon Young at Cajun Dome in Lafayette, Louisiana after original opponent Zolani Tete of South Africa backed out due to a right shoulder injury.

While Tete is undoubtedly the more dangerous opponent, the 36-year-old Donaire isn’t taking Young, the reserved fighter of the series, lightly.

Showing the effects of hard work he had put into his training, Donaire checked in at 117.6 pounds during Friday’s official weigh-in, less than the 118-pound (bantamweight) limit and a tad more than Young, who came in at 117.3.

“I’m going to go in there against Stephon Young and I’m going to do what I came here to do in front of the Lafayette fans, my friends and family—take my titles to the finals,” Donaire wrote on a tweet.

Though Tete and Young are both southpaws, Donaire still needs to make last-minute changes as Young stands only 5-foot-5 and has a shorter reach than Tete.

In addition, Young – whose only loss came at the hands of Filipino Reymart Gaballo last year – moves a lot than Tete, a knockout artist.

The victor will battle the winner of the other semifinal pitting World Boxing Association champion Naoya Inoue of Japan against International Boxing Federation titlist Emmanuel Rodriguez of Puerto Rico on May 18.

Donaire is favored to duplicate his stoppage win of Northern Ireland’s Ryan Burnett in Scotland last November for the WBA super bantamweight crown. –

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