Protagonists have been named, venue determined and date finalized. The quest for the Orient and Pacific Boxing Federation (OPBF) Minimumweight Championship has been inked between top contender Melvin Jerusalem and 10th ranked Roberto “Toto” Landero.
Melvin Jerusalem hails from Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon and has been fighting out of Cebu City under the tutelage of his long time coach Michael “Bruce Lee” Domingo, himself an accomplished boxer of his time. Both boxer and coach were formerly of the famed ALA Boxing of Cebu City. Jerusalem, who is now fighting under the ZIP-SanMan banner, has been a long time lurker at the top of OPBF and the WBC championship doors. He has so far compiled an excellent record of 16-2-0 with 10 knockouts out of those wins. His two losses were against a Thai boxing champion/legend and another Pinoy spitfire, respectively. Since losing his last fight in 2017, he has compiled a 5-fight winning streak. Many boxing observers consider Melvin as one of the country’s brightest prospect for another world championship in the future. And lifting this OPBF re-designed belt for him is a step to that eventuality.
Toto Landero on the other hand is one of the country’s top guns in the 105-108lbs divisions. Landero, owing to his non-stop punching style, has always been regarded as a crowd-pleasing slugger. He carries a record of 11-5-2, with all his 5 losses against top, world class caliber boxers. He owns a win over world champion Vic Saludar, happened sometime in 2017. In that win, he engaged Saludar in a slugfest from pillar to post for 10 rounds and emerged as a split decision winner with two judges favoring the Pontevedra, Negros Occidental native. Vic Saludar is the current WBA World Minimumweight Champion. A win over Jerusalem will surely boost Landero’s stocks and a possibility of another world title fight looms.
This Jerusalem-Landero fight is anticipated nothing less of a war. Landero’s gameness will match well with Jerusalem’s volume-punching prowess. Jerusalem’s quick-footed style will serve him good against Landero’s wallops and devil-may-care attitude. This match-up is what the doctor ordered for all the avid fans of boxing at the moment. This is what we are all been waiting for – an action-packed match up between the country’s top dogs. No cherry picking here which has been the thing of some promoters and managers just to pad their ward’s records. We hope to see more match ups pitting best against best and tops against tops.
Catch all the action at the Zip-Sanman Facebook and YouTube pages as they are streaming the fights live on July 18, 2021 from the Tabunok Sports Complex in Talisay City, Cebu.