Tuesday, 01/11/2022 08:23

IBF Asian champion Quân to defend belt against Baconaje in December


Việt Nam's Đinh Hồng Quân (right) lands a jab on Jules Victoriano of the Philippines in his IBF title defence in July. Quân will defend his lightweight belt for the second time against Arnel Baconaje, also from the Philippines, in December. Photo

HÀ NỘI — Asia lightweight International Boxing Federation champion Đinh Hồng Quân will defend his belt against Arnel Baconaje of the Philippines on December 10.

The evening promises to be one of the biggest boxing events the country has ever seen, as Quân sets out to defend his IBF belt for the second time at the Grand Hồ Tràm Strip Hotel in Bà Rịa Vũng Tàu Province.

On Saturday, the skilful Pinoy boxer Baconaje was confirmed as Quân's challenger in an announcement by organisers, VSP Promotions and Cocky Buffalo.

Quân has a good record against Filipino rivals, having beaten Delmar Pellio and Jules Victoriano in the past.

He secured his IBF belt in April when he defeated Pellio in a 10-round contest. Three months later, he successfully defended his title when he beat Victoriano on points in a 12-round bout.

However, Baconaje will be his sternest test to date. 

The rising Vietnamese star does have a size advantage. He has recorded nine wins (4KOs), one draw and one loss (KO).

At 24, Quân is younger than his rival and stands at No. 207 in the world, 23 places higher than Baconaje.

However, Baconaje has bowled over some of the Philippines' biggest and best stars. Of his 15 wins, 11 came by knockout. The 29-year-old suffered five losses, three by knockout.

Quân is currently training in South Korea. He had planned to join Filipino legend Manny Pacquiao's training camp to fast-track his progress, but the plans never materialised. 

Baconaje is in Japan training with pound-for-pound star Naoya Inoue.

The December 10 show will feature four title bouts between fighters from the Philippines, Indonesia, South Korea, Thailand, Uzbekistan and Việt Nam. 

The home country will be represented in five of the eight bouts.

Among the other fighters named on the card is WBA Asia super-featherweight champion Charly Suarez of the Philippines, and Vietnamese champion Nguyễn Văn Hải, who is looking to make another statement in the professional game. 

Hải competed recently in Manila against one of the Philippines' hottest lightweight prospects Jerald Into. That high-level bout will have prepared him well for an epic show this December. VNS

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