San Juan, Nov. 14.- Former Puerto Rican champion Emmanuel ‘Manny’ Rodriguez is clear that winning Mexican Luis ‘Pantera’ Nery will leave him closer to the world title of the bantamweight of the World Boxing Council (WBC).
But if he loses, he may have reached the end of his short career.
“It’s now or never. ‘Manny’ Rodriguez can’t be willing to receive another defeat.
It may be the end of my career, because two defeats are something that no boxer would like, “the 118-pound (54 kilos) specialist told Efe after a practice for the November 23 fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Rodriguez (19-1, 12 KOs) will be measured with the undefeated Nery (30-0, 24 KOs) after the passport to challenge the Frenchman Nordine Oubaali (16-3, 4 KOs), current WBC monarch.
The first defeat in Rodriguez’s career came on May 18 against Japanese Naoya Inoue in Scotland.
The Puerto Rican fell by knockout in the second round and lost his belt of the rooster division of the International Boxing Federation (IBF).
The former champion is preparing at the Olympic Shelter in Salinas (south) under the tutelage of coach William Cruz.
“The opportunity is there,” he said to signify destiny is in its blows.
“It’s a very important fight and that since they offered it to us, we didn’t hesitate and said yes,” said the gold medalist in the first edition of the Youth Games held in Singapore in 2010.
“Nery will make us get the tools that ‘Manny’ Rodriguez has had throughout his career,” he said.
The Mexican said he is a boxer who has only one fight train: “go forward.”
“Nery is a boxer who for some is the wrong fight, but for us it is the wrong fight with the right boxer,” said the Puerto Rican fighter.
Coach William Cruz has planned a preparation for the Puerto Rican who favors intelligence in the ring and then gives way to the inherent skills
“We wanted to strengthen the style of ‘Manny’. He is a complete boxer, but we became more specific. We strengthened the skills of ‘Manny’, such as highlighting his good reflexes and his mobility to the sides,” said Cruz.
“I do not doubt that ‘Manny’ offers a great show. And I dare to say that on the 23rd, many of his followers who left in the last match, are going to believe in him again,” Cruz said.
Contrary to what his pupil calls to the four winds, the coach does not believe that a defeat ends his career.
“If we want to enter the elite league, we have to beat Nery and that is what will happen on the 23rd,” he said.