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By Ronnie Nathanielsz

A supremely confident Z "The Dream" Gorres said yesterday he was in the best condition of his life, sharp and focused and ready to win the WBO championship belt when he clashes with Mexican champion Fernando Montiel in "The Moment of Truth" fight card for the ages at the Cebu City Sports Complex tomorrow.

Only trouble is Montiel said he "left the WBO championship belt in my home because I dont intend to lose" to which Gorres said the WBO could always make another one for him.

The exchanges between Montiel and Gorres was the highpoint of a huge and entertaining press conference at the Waterfront Hotel which won commendation from Golden Boy Promotions vice president Eric Gomez and international matchmaker Sampson Lewkowicz as well as internatioinally respected judges Chuck Giampa and Raul Caiz Jr.and WBO vice president and Asia Pacific chairman Leon Panoncillo who said the Boom Boom Bautista fight against Marino Montiel Gonzalez has been sanctioned as a WBO Intercontinental title fight.

Even trainer Edito "Ala" Villamor said he was "taken aback at the over confidence of Gorres" but said he was sure the flashy southpaw and mandatory challenger "knew what he is capable of doing in thwe ring." Villamor, himself a two-time world title challenger said Gorres "has the skill and the power to win" stressing thatn while he may not be a one punch KO artist his perfect timing and combinations have the same effect.

Montiel said that when he first came to the Philippines he boldly predicted he would win by a first round knockout but after seeing Gorres he said "make that two rounds." At the same time Montiel, his father and trainer Manuel Montiel Sr and Fernando's three brothers said they were overwhelmed by the kindness and hospitalty shown them and the preconceptions they had of the Philippines have all been erased.

Gomez warned Gorres that Montiel is "the best fighter in the world at 115 pounds and he is a fighter. So you better be ready." Gomez said Gorres was "a great prospect" and he expected a truly entertaining fight. Montiel looked trim and sharp while Gorres also looked in great shape and ready he said "to give the Filipino boxing fans something to cheer about." Montiel has a record of 32-2-1 with 24 KO's while Gorres is 26-1-1 with 12 KO's.

Emerging ring sensation Rey "Boom Booom" Bautista whose opponent, Latino champion Feider Viloria couldn't get a transit visa for Amsterdam and was replaced by Marino Montiel Gonzalez said he was "ready to face anybody as long as his weight was 22 pounds" once again demonstrating his eagerness to get to the top as soon as possible and earn a crack at the world title.

Lewkowicz cautioned the undefeated Bautista (2109, 16 KO's) against thinking that the replacement, Gonzalez,was a pushover. He said Gonzalez (29-8, 15 KO's) was in shape and had trained for six weeks since he had a scheduled fight in Mexico next week. Looking at Bautista, Lewkowicz said "Boom Boom, you better be ready because this is no easy fight."

The exciting undercard features promising Jimrex Jaca (27-3-1, 12 KO's) against Indonesia's Simon Butar Butar (15-5-1, 11 KO's) who knocked out Czar Amonsot in one round and promised to do the same to Jaca. But the hard-hitting southpaw retorted by saying the win over Amonsot "was a fluke" and that he planned "to avenge that loss."

One of the eagerly awaited fights will be the pro debut of Bai Elorde, the grandson of the late, great Gabriel "Flash" Elorde who like his lolo is a junior lightweight and battles Joseph Mateo who is also making his pro debut. Two other excellent fighters from the ALA Gym, Bert Batawang and AJ Banal will akso see action with Batawang taking on Indonesia's Sofan Effendi and Banal clashing with Thailand's Komrit EvereadyGym.

The giant Philippine broadcast network ABS-CBN will telecast the fights on a slightly delayed basis beginning at 9:30 p.m. over Channel 2 and will also carry the fights on its widely-watched TFC, The Filipino Channel.
 
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