Filipino youngster Mark Magsayo (19-0, 14) was looking like he was on a collision course for a world title fight when around 2 years ago. In fact in 2017 he was ranked highly with the alphabet boys, had scored back to back blow out wins over Issa Nampepeche and Daniel Diaz. He had also picked up a good win over Japan's Shota Hayashi, sending the former Japanese national Featherweight champion into retirement.
Sadly all his momentum was lost after a battle with Filipino promotional outfit ALA, and he would spend more than a year out of the ring, not fighting at all in 2018.
Thankfully today Magsayo did, finally, return to action and had the chance to show what he could do before stopping Indonesian foe Erick Deztroyer (12-5-1, 3) in 4 rounds in Singapore.
Magsayo looked like he was wanting to make a statement, and really was on the hunt from the opening bell. Credit needs to be given to Deztroyer for not finding a soft place to fall over in the opening round. Despite being tough Deztroyer was given given a beating through the first 3 rounds, before finally going down in round 4 for the 10 count.
Whilst this performance doesn't show how "Magnifico" would look against top competition it was clear the 23 year old didn't have any ring rust, and looked sharp from the opening bell. It's now only a matter of time before he gets a big bout, an over-due big bout.
Later today fight fans in the Philippines will get the chance to see WBO International Featherweight champion Mark Magsayo (17-0, 13) defending his title against former Japanese champion Shota Hayashi (30-6-1, 18).
Interesting UK Bookmakers have priced the bout up, and have made Magsayo an almost unbackable favourite to retain his title.
The local favourite is 1/16 to defend his title against the challenger, and win by any means. Hayashi on the other hand is available at a relatively huge 39/5, suggesting that no one is giving him a chance. Whilst Hayashi's loss earlier this yuear to Kosuke Saka could explain those odds, they do seem very wide given the match up we'll be getting.
Earlier this week ALA announced their next big show, Pinoy Pride 43, which will take place on November 25th in Tagbilaran City, Bohol.
Sadly the card isn't going to be headlined by a world title fight, as some had expected, but on the hand the main event of the card is still a very good looking match up which will see unbeaten Filipino Mark Magsayo (17-0, 13) take on former Japanese champion Shota Hayashi (30-6-1, 18).
The bout will see the unbeaten Magsayo defending his WBO International Featherweight title for the third time, and continue his journey to a world title fight. He won the title back in 2016, stopping Chris Avalos in a FOTY contender, and has since defended the title against Ramiro Robles and Daniel Diaz, whilst talking about moving into a world title fight. Although touted as one of the future stars of Filipino boxing he hans't yet managed to convince his promoters that he's ready to face the likes of Oscar Valdez, Lee Selby, Leo Santa Cruz of Gary Russell Jr. A win here may go some way to getting a shot to prove just how good he is.
Hayashi is a former Japanese Featherweight champion who won the title in September 2016 and made a single successful defense, beating former world champion Akifumi Shimoda. He lost his title earlier this year, suffering a third round stoppage loss to Kosuke Saka in April, and has since bounced back with a win over Markquil Salvana. The loss to Saka put the breaks on his rise, though it's clear that he'll be looking at this bout as a chance to kick start his pursuit of a world title, and put himself back into the title mix.
Other fighters included on his card include the once beaten Albert Pagara (28-1, 19) and former world title challengers Melvin Jerusalem (11-2, 7) and Rocky Fuentes (35-9-2, 20), though all 3 are in bouts that look like mismatches on paper.
Earlier today Filipino fight fans got the chance to see a number of prospects in action as part of a PPV card put on by leading Filipino promotional outfit ALA Promotions. The show featured a number of top prospects and although the televised audience would have disappointing the fighters did, for the most part, deliver.
The main event saw the touted Mark Magsayo (17-0, 13) retain his WBO International Featherweight title, as he blitzed former world title challenger Daniel Diaz (23-8-2, 15) inside a round. Diaz was down 3 times in 105 seconds as Magsayo recorded his second straight opening round stoppage. Although Diaz had been proposed as a tough test having only been stopped twice in his career, in 11 rounds by Koki Kameda and 4 rounds by Andres Gutierrez, Magsayo made it look easy. The problem now for ALA is what they do with Magsayo, as they cannot keep him on a leash for much longer, and they will need to let him face fellow contenders in the near future.
Another opening round win was scored by Jeo Santisima (14-2, 12), who blew away the previously unbeaten Goodluck Mrema (16-1, 8). On paper this looked like a good test for Santisima but he was was too good, too heavy handed and too powerful for the visitor from Tanzania.
Another stoppage win on this card was scored by Albert Pagara (28-1, 19), who beat Patomsith Pathompothong (16-10, 6) [ปฐมสิทธิ์ เกษตรพัฒนา] in 4 rounds. The Thai put in a weird performance here where he seemed to spend more time show boating and playing to the crowd than actually fighting. The stoppage was an odd one too with the Thai being taged by two solid shots but he seemed to send himself to the canvas and take the count in what will go down as a very odd performance, and a third straight stoppage loss for the Thai, who is now 1-6 in his last 7. As for Pagara this was his second win since being stopped by Cesar Juarez a year ago.
The wins for Magsayo, Santisima and Pagara were all expected, though there was an upset as former world title challenger Melvin Jerusalem (11-2, 7) came up short against Joey Canoy (13-3-1, 6). Jerusalem gave Wanheng Menayothin a real run for his money in previous fight and was expected to bounce back with a win here but a knockdown against him in round 7 and point deduction in round 8 denied him a draw, with the judges scoring the contest 95-93, twice, and 96-92 to Canoy. The loss is a major set back for Jerusalem who looked like a world champion in the making and will now see Canoy's career take a huge boost.
Earlier today Filipino fight fans at the Cebu City Waterfront Hotel & Casino, Barangay Lahug got the chance to see Pinoy Pride 40:Domination, the latest in the ALA series of Pinoy Pride shows.
The main event of the card saw Donnie Nietes (40-1-4, 22) takes a well earned, but hard foughht, decision win over Thailand's Eaktawan BTU Ruaviking (22-4, 15) to claim the IBF Flyweight and become the third Filipino to become a 3 weight world champion. The Filipino fighter did struggle at times, particularly in the middle of the fight, but clearly won using his speed and skills to keep Eaktawan at bay, and make the Thai miss wildly.
Nietes wasn't the only notable Filipino picking up a win on this card however with several others picking up wins.
One of those was Mark Magsayo (16-0, 12), who destroyed the horribly over-matched Issa Nampepeche (24-8-2, 11) inside a round. Magsayo had stated that he expected the bout to be easy and that proved to be the case with the visitor being dropped twice in what served as a relatively pointless contest. Magsayo's team stated that they were wanting to give him development time before pushign on with him, but this bout really didn't help him develop with Nampepeche not being a suitable opponent at all. Despite Magsayo dealing with him easily it should be noted that the vistor had never been stopped so quickly.
Another was the heavy handed Jeo Santisima (13-2, 11), who dominated Indonesian foe Master Suro (11-9-1, 2) in a frustrating affair. Suro, a born survivor, was down in round 6 but failed to go away and took Santisima beyond 6 rounds for the first time, though did lose very widely on the scorecards after 10 rounds.
In a really fun bout teenager Virgel Vitor (10-1, 6) had a 10 round battle with the under-rated Michael Escobia (11-15-1, 3), in a real back and forth war. The teenager did enough to earn the win, but really had to fight for it, and will have learned a lot from the contest.
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