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Manny Pacquiao

Ex-champ Dodie Boy Peñalosa helps Donaire whip into shape

April 13, 2009 7:44pm

MANILA, Philippines – Former world champion Dodie Boy Peñalosa has been helping Nonito “The Filipino Flash" Donaire, Jr. whip into shape in preparation for his title defense against Raul “Cobra" Martinez on April 19.

Peñalosa, who held the International Boxing Federation’s lightflyweight belt in 1983 and flyweight crown in 1987, has been training Donaire for a good four months now, with the assistance of his brothers Jonathan and World Boxing Organization bantam king Gerry at some point.

Donaire will stake his IBF and International Boxing Organization flyweight titles against Martinez and Peñalosa advised his ward to capitalize on all his advantages for this title fight.

“Relax lang (don’t get pressured)," Peñalosa said in an interview with 24 Oras. “Mas lamang tayo kasi nandito ang laban at tayo ang champion. Alam ko kayang kaya mo yan."

Under Dodie Boy and his brothers, Donaire has already sparred more than 150 rounds. This is now the most extensive training camp for Donaire but he shrugged off fears he might have over-trained this time.

“For the first time in my life naka-spar ako for more than 150 rounds. There are fears na ma-overtrain ako but I’ve been taking good care of my body. Kapag tingin ko over-trained na ako, magpapahinga muna ako," Donaire said.

So serious is the 26-year-old Donaire in attaining top form is that he still engaged in a grueling 12-round sparring session during Lent, according to Peñalosa.

“Hindi ko naranasan noon na mag-sparring ng Biyernes Santo. Ensayo, oo, pero sparring hindi. Importanteng importante kasi ngayon dahil last day ng sparring niya (Donaire) yun," said Dodie Boy, who bucked polio to become a two-division champion.

Donaire will headline Sunday's championship double-header “The Flash and the Furious" card at the Araneta Coliseum, where Brian Viloria will also be vying for the IBF light-flyweight title against champ Ulises Solis. –GMANews.TV