With less than a week to go before undefeated Filipino light flyweight hopeful Jether Oliva (17-0-1, 11 KOs) enters the ring for his first world title shot against tough Mexican world champion Ulises Solis (33-2-3, 21 KOs), Jim Manangquil, Oliva’s ex-manager, sees that a win for his former ward will only be realized with an early stoppage. Oliva and Solis will be slugging it out for the latter’s IBF light flyweight crown on August 27th, 2011 at the Auditorio Benito Juarez in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Manangquil managed Oliva’s budding career when the latter was still starting out in his native city of General Santos, Philippines. Under Manangquil’s guidance, Oliva went to win his first 15 professional bouts.
Talking to this writer, Manangquil voiced his concerns regarding the level of opposition Oliva will be facing that night. 29-year old Solis is a battle-scarred veteran with 38 bouts under his name and parades fights with some of the lower division’s biggest names, including Brian Viloria, Rodel Mayol, Luis Alberto Lazarte, Omar Soto and Edgar Sosa.
In contrast, the upcoming contest will be Oliva’s first fight abroad and his second time to face a foreign opponent. However, no boxers in Oliva’s prior fights are in the same class with Solis.
“Solis is a force in the light flyweight division and boasts of experience and skills,” Manangquil told this writer. “But I understand why Jether’s team took the fight. A world title shot is a world title shot no matter how you look at it.”
Asked what would he do if he were in Oliva’s corner, Manangquil would egg his former ward to push the fight to Solis and go and seek for a knockout.
“I would tell Jether to find the opportunity to stop Solis early,” the young boxing manager from General Santos said. “It will be hard to beat the opponent as the fight goes on, considering he will be fighting Solis in his hometown.”
Opportunity for exposure
With the cancellation of the Robert Guerrero-Marcos Maidana fight on the same date, Solis-Oliva will be receiving huge amounts of TV exposure from a major American media outlet that will be telecasting their showdown live to US audience, according to a recent report from Fight News.