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Magsayo, Vargas renew ring rivalry



The fabled Philippines versus Mexico ring wars and a long-standing coaching rivalry are set to be rekindled with the impending world title clash between newly-crowned World Boxing Council (WBC) featherweight champion and mandatory challenger Rey Vargas.

Sean Gibbons, who represents Magsayo, told Daily Tribune that July is the target date for the battle between the two undefeated punchers.

Yesterday, the WBC issued an order for Magsayo to make the first defense of the 126-lb title he had won from Gary Russell via majority decision over the weekend in Atlantic City against Vargas.

It was WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman who made the order for a Magsayo-Vargas duel.

“The title shot comes to me at an excellent time, during a great period of my life, with greater maturity, now I enjoy things more, I commit more, I have always been a perfectionist, but now even more so…  all of this has taken me where I am and the goal is to be a new world champion,” Vargas told he Mexican sports paper ESTO.

If everything falls into place, Magsayo and Vargas pick up from where Manny Pacquiao had left off.

Interestingly, the battle of Hall of Fame trainers gets under way again as Freddie Roach deals with old rival Nacho Beristain.

Roach, who turns 62 on 5 March, was enshrined in Canastota, home of the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2012.

Beristain, famous for his handling of Juan Manuel Marquez and Ricardo Lopez, was inducted two years earlier in 2010.

Vargas, who stands 5-10 is a long-armed bomber who holds a 35-0 record with 22 knockouts.

Since turning pro in 2010, Vargas has victimized seven Filipinos, five of them unable to go the distance.