July 18, 2024

■  Harley F. Palangchao

Cordilleran female boxer Jessebelle Pagaduan has captured the vacant World Boxing Council Asia flyweight belt with a unanimous decision win against a Thai opponent in Bangkok, Thailand on June 27.

At age 39, the boxing pride of Buguias, Benguet, who trains out of Highland Boxing Gym, became the oldest regional boxing champion from the country after winning over Pimchanok Thepjanda at the SpacePlus Night Club.

IGOROTA WORLD BOXING CHAMPION — At age 39, Buguias, Benguet pride Jessebelle Pagaduan captured the World Boxing Council Asia flyweight belt against Pimchanok Thepjand of Thailand in Bangkok, Thailand on June 27. — Contributed photo

All three Thai judges gave it to Pagaduan, 78-74, 78-74, and 77-75.

Pagaduan, a three-time world title challenger, used her fight experience to her advantage, as she outpointed the big-hearted 20-year-old Thai opponent.

The Filipina boxer improved her record to 14 wins against two losses and one draw while the Thepjanda dropped to nine wins and five losses.

Pagaduan thanked her head coach Rene Toto and teammates Allan John Alegria and Fel Morales for preparing her for the fight after a three-month hiatus.

Pagaduan also won her fight against Panymad Bubpamalo via majority decision, also in Bangkok on March 30 this year.

In 2019, Pagaduan fought for the World Boxing Organization light flyweight world belt but she was stopped by Tenkai Tsunami, 39, of Japan via technical knockout.

Pagaduan captured the vacant Philippine female minimum weight belt with a technical knockout of Carleans Rivas on July 27, 2013.

She also fought for the WBO minimum female flyweight belt against Kumiko Seeser Ikehara of Japan on Feb. 2, 2015 that ended in a draw.

At the time, her only loss in 12 professional bouts was when she fought former International Boxing Association minimum world champion Nao Ikeyama of Japan, who won via unanimous decision in Osaka, Japan on June 17, 2014.