Jerwin Ancajas is ready to defend his IBF super flyweight title for the third time in eight months.
According to ESPN's Dan Rafael, Ancajas will defend his title against Alejandro Santiago on September 29. The report states the fight is expected to take place in California. This will be Ancajas' third title fight against a Mexican fighter after having previously defeated Israel Gonzalez and Jose Alfredo Rodriguez by stoppage.
The 26-year-old Ancajas successfully retained his belt in February and in May. Ancajas' February title defense saw defeat Gonzalez in the 10th round of their fight, televised on ESPN, while Ancajas’ title fight in May was when he defeated Jonas Sultan by unanimous decision on a card that also featured WBA super flyweight champion Kal Yafai fighting on the undercard. The hope for that May card would have been to build towards a potential unification fight between the two super flyweight champions, but the fight was never made, likely taking place in 2019 at the earliest if it ever happened. The win over Sultan was the first world title fight between two boxers born in the Philippines in the 21st century.
Ancajas has held the title since September 2016 when he defeated then-champion McJoe Arroyo to win the belt. Ancajas has made five successful title defense, with the last three being broadcast on one of the ESPN platforms.
Santiago will be competing in his first world title fight. He has only fought once in 2018, which was a split draw against WBO-NABO super flyweight champion Jose "Chiquiro" Martinez back in March in Puerto Rico. That fight headlined a Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN card.