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To correct it, Solon has introduced a new scientific approach that focuses more on the muscle groups and motions boxers utilize in the ring, but admits that there’s still a lot of work to be done.
“I still feel like we still have a very long way to go, and I still have more questions than answers as to how to program my boxers. I’m still not contented and I feel our boxers aren’t really where they should be as far as athleticism is concerned. There is still a lot of work to be done, and I hope we realize our potential soon as I still find my boxers weak and slow,” Solon said.
(CLICK HERE TO WATCH A VIDEO BY ESNEWSREPORTING.COM ON ROBERT GARCIA TALKING ABOUT THE POSSIBILITY OF TRAINING AJ BANAL)
Mayol also suggested that the level of competition and sparring may have something to do with ALA’s fortunes- which makes sense. If you’re the best in your gym, it’s really hard to push yourself to the next level.
As it is, ALA does a great job in building up their fighters, and matching them against the right opponents. But when it comes to the elite level, ALA fighters, with the exception of Nietes, have been overwhelmed, which is why I thoght it was a great idea when I first heard from Robert Garcia that ALA Promotions reached out to him about sending some of their fighters to his gym in Oxnard, California to train.
In fairness though, it hasn’t only been ALA boxers who have had such fate. Other Filipino fighters not under ALA Promotions like Bernabe Concepcion, Richie Mepranum, Edrin Dapudong, Marvin Sonsona and Ciso Morales have also come up short against top caliber opposition. Even ‘The Hawaiian Punch” Brian Viloria has shown a history of gassing out toward the end of his big fights.
Perhaps it ultimately comes down to what ALA trainer Villamor told me. “We can only do our best to help the fighters, but inside the ring, it’s up to them.”
Manny Pacquiao was pretty raw himself, and for the most part, was training in the Philippines, when he upset Lehlo Ledwaba back in 2001 and got his big break.
Maybe there isn’t really anything wrong with ALA fighters after all. Perhaps, Filipino fans have just been spoiled by the fact that Pacquiao has achieved so many great things in the sport of boxing. Because in all honesty, Filipino or not, “Manny Pacquiaos” only come once in a lifetime. The fact that we have a Nonito Donaire Jr., only means that the boxing gods are definitely smiling at us.
But hey, whether you agree or not, it’s good to know that ALA Promotions is constantly doing what they can to elevate their fighters. As long as Filipino fans continue to support Philippine boxing, the talent level of our fighters will only continue to improve, and it’s only a matter of time that you see more world champions.
Writer’s note: Watch out for my exclusive interview with ALA strength and conditioning coach Pio Solon!
-DG- visit www.DSOURCEboxing.com
Filipino Sports Examiner Dennis ‘dSource’ Guillermo is a freelance sports writer and contributes to TV5’s Interaksyon.com, BoxingScene.com, The SunStar newspaper in the Philippines and SportsManila.net.
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