Albert Pagara and Jesus Chito Rios pose at Boracay Club, Asiana Hotel, Deira ahead of their ‘Pinoy Pride 32: Duel in Dubai 2’. Image Credit: Atiq ur Rehman/Gulf News

Dubai: The Mexican duo of Jesus ‘Chito’ Rios and Ramiro ‘Xixime’ Alcaraz have predicted a knockout night at the ‘Pinoy Pride 32: Duel in Dubai 2’ to be held at the Dubai World Trade Centre on Friday.

Much of the attention will focus on the international debut of the Filipino Pagara brothers, Albert and Jason, as they line up against challengers from Mexico.

Presented by The Filipino Channel (TFC), ABS-CBN Sports + Action and ALA promotions, Albert will be up against Rios for the IBP Intercontinental Junior Featherweight Championship belt over 12 rounds, while Jason ‘El Niño’ Pagara will take on Alcaraz over ten rounds in the Junior Welterweight Division. Gates will open at 5 pm and the first bout is scheduled for a 7 pm start.

“Boxers from the Philippines and Mexico have always displayed a high level of entertainment in boxing,” Michael Aldeguer, President and Ceo, ALA Promotions said at the press conference on Thursday.

The ‘Pinoy Pride’ series made its UAE debut in September last year, and plans are now afoot to take the sport to the USA with the first bout scheduled in California on October 17. “The support for the opening round last year was electric and this is very much in keeping with our philosophy of taking our sport to the rest of the world,” Aldeguer noted.

The 21-year-old Albert will face the 31-year-old Rios in the main event to defend his IBF Intercontinental Junior Featherweight belt. An orthodox fighter known for his aggressive loud punches, the undefeated Albert has a record of 23 wins, 16 of which were via knockouts. He is coming off a solid victory over Mexico’s Rodolfo Hernandez in March, but reckons it will be a different story against Rios on Friday.

“There will be a knock-out for sure. The only thing I don’t know is which round the knock-out will come,” Albert predicted.

“It’s very easy to speak about a knock-out. I am not here for fun. I have the experience and I doubt he’s going to have things easy in the ring. I am well prepared. Who knows it can be the other way around,” his Mexican opponent retorted.

“I like the way I have trained. He [Albert] is a good fighter, but we have a plan in place. I am really not concerned about the support the Filipino will get. Ultimately, there will be only two of us in the ring and it will be left to us to decide who is the better fighter on the night,” he added.

“I am here to win and I think by the fifth round, there will be a knock-out.”

Jason, two years older than Albert, has a record of 35 wins and two losses going in against Alcaraz, who stands with 15 wins, four losses and a draw and is coming off a second round TKO against Mexican Cesar Chavez in February. Also in action on Friday will be Jimrex ‘Executioner’ Jaca against Dubai-based Filipino Larry Abarra, while Mexican Pablo Lugo Montiel will take on Indonesia’s Tony Arema. The remaining three bouts will involve Dubai-based boxers with Lasisi Bamidele taking on Singnoi Singmansak of Thailand over four rounds; Deo Krizito facing Fapetch Manopchaigym of Thailand over six rounds and Nicholas Mwangi squaring up against Syria’s Mohammad Akram over four rounds.