Brian Viloria

Hawaiian Punch plays
patient for his golden
boxing opportunity

Other fighters in the flyweight division may have the gold; Brian Viloria of Waipahu is the division's golden boy.

Viloria (16-0, 10 KOs) hopes to fight for his first world title in 2005. His manager, Gary Gittelsohn, had an offer on the table from International Boxing Federation champion Irene Pacheco before Pacheco was knocked out by Vic Darchinyan last month.

One of Darchinyan's first public comments after beating Pacheco for the International Boxing Federation title was to call out Viloria, saying that he expects to travel to Hawaii for a "big money" fight with the Hawaiian Punch. Although such a matchup is unlikely, it's the thought that counts.

"I think it's a great thing, it's awesome," Viloria said. "He is a world champion and he is looking toward me. I hope they all want me, because the way I feel now the only thing that can stop me is if people keep backing out."

The World Boxing Council ranks Viloria second among flyweights and may move him to the top spot after No. 1 contender Luis Maldonado refused to fight him despite being ordered to by the organization. Viloria climbs the WBC rankings despite only three fights in each of the past two years.

The World Boxing Association puts Viloria third, the World Boxing Organization has him sixth and Darchinyan's IBF moved Viloria from 14th to 10th after he knocked out Angel Priolo on the same day Darchinyan won his title.

In Viloria's perfect world, he would like to fight WBC champion Pongsaklek Wonjongkam for the title somewhere other than Wonjongkam's native Thailand. But the WBC champion has never fought outside of Asia and may never have to as long as he keeps the title he won in 2001, the third-longest reign in the WBC. No American has ever held the WBC flyweight title.

Viloria, Gittelsohn and trainer Freddie Roach won't have a plan set until later this month, but Viloria has time on his side. Viloria is only 16 fights into his career while champions Wonjongkam has 56 contests and Darchinyan 22. WBA champ Lorenzo Parra fought 25 times.

"I've got a lot of options on the table," Viloria said. "I have told my people that I believe I am ready and they will make it happen, but people have to be patient until the right opportunity comes along for me. There is no reason to rush into a bad situation."

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