Last night in Mexico fight fans in Mexico saw a second bout between WBC female Bantamweight champion Mariana Juarez (50-9-4, 18) and Japanese challenger Terumi Nuki (10-4, 7) [ぬき てるみ], and as with their first bout Juarez successfully defended her title.
Nuki had lost the first bout due to being out worked, out boxed and out moved. She had promised to let her hands go more this time around and seemed to do that at times. Sadly for the challenger however the champion was regularly out landing her, hitting the better combinations and moving away from the power shots of Nuki.
Nuki had some early success, hurting Juarez in the early going, and again towards the end of the bout as Juarez's foot work began to slow, but by then the Mexican had built up a hefty lead. That lead was then extended with Nuki being deducted a point for an accidental headclash in round 10, with the headclash giving Juarez a pretty nasty cut.
At the end of the 10 round distance there was no real argument about the winner, with Juarez clearly taking the victory, but Nuki certainly did show signs of improvement from her first loss to Juarez.
After the bout it was confirmed that Juarez will return later this year to face Jackie Nava, in what will be a female super fight. Nava also picked up a win on this very same card to help build that match up further.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Yesterday in Mexico fans had the chance to see Japanese fighter Terumi Nuki (9-2, 6) [ぬき てるみ] face off with WBC female Bantamweight champion Mariana Juarez (46-9-4, 17). Sadly for Nuki she came up short, as Juarez retained her title in front of her local fans.
The talented Juarez never looked like she had any problems against Nuki and was too good, too busy and too quick for the challenger who looked second best through out.
Although second best and in front of a very pro-Juarez crowd the Japanese fighter never showed any hints of quitting and tried to turn the fight around. Sadly though she could never come close to turnign it around.
At the end of 10 rounds all 3 judges had it 98-92 to the Mexican, who adds Nuki's name to a of Japanese fighters that she's beaten, including Tenkai Tsunami, Shindo Go, Riyo Togo and Asami Shikasho. As for Nuki she'll have learned a lot from this bout, despite being widely beaten. She'll take a lot of valuable experience and will likely bounce back to fight for a world title again, somewhere down the line, and likely at Super Flyweight which is her natural weight class.
Every so often we get a bout that we just know will be good, today we had one such bout as WBO female Bantamweight champion Naoko Fujioka (15-1, 6) [藤岡 奈穂子] took on former WBC female Flyweight champion Shindo Go (16-4, 11) [真道ゴー], and the two fighters gave us possibly the female fight of the year.
The bout started with Go on the offensive and in both of the opening two rounds it seemed the challenger hurt the champion. Fujioka was forced to hold and ride out the early storm whilst looking like an ageing fighter. From round 3 however the champion began to figure out the challenger, time her assaults more carefully begin to take over the bout, whilst Go had to fight with a badly damaged born around the eye.
Whilst Fujioka was racking up the rounds through the middle of the fight Go always looked dangerous, until the end of the 8th round when Fujioka finally scored a knockdown, and almost a knockout with the bell essentially saving Go.
Coming out for the final two rounds the challenger gave everything but couldn't deter the wonderful champion who recorded her first defense of the title with scores of 97-92 and 98-91, twice
Following the win Fujioka noted that her new target in the sport was to become a 5-weight champion before retiring. Sadly for Go this could potentially be a career ending bout, with the fighter set to under-go sexual realignment surgery later in the year.
Notably Go was taken straight to hospital after the bout due to the eye injury.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
Earlier today in Japan fans had the chance to see the popular Naoko Fujioka (14-1, 6) strengthen her claim as one of the best female fighters on the planet as she became Japan's first female 3-weight world champion, and just the third Japanese fighter to ever achieve the feat.
The talented Japanese fighter, who claimed her first world title down at 105lb, stepped up to the Bantamweight division today and easily over-came the game but out matched Korean fighter Hee Jung Yuh (15-3, 6), the wife of future world title challenger Young Kil Bae, the laim the WBO title.
From the first round it was clear the women were in different levels. Fujioka immediately found the range and timing for her jab, her movement, accuracy and speed were too good and as the rounds progressed she showed off more and more from her arsenal, with left hooks to the body being particularly noticeable.
Given the dominance by Fujioka the crowd seemed to turn from wanting to see their fighter win to seeing her score a KO, and she really went for it. Unfortunately Yuh was to show her toughness and see out the schedule, though did by scores of 100-90, twice, and 99-91.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
Japan's Tenkai Tsunami (21-11, 10) really is a road warrior and that was seen again late on Saturday as she traveled to Chile, getting another new stamp on her passport, to face local star Carolina Rodriguez (15-0, 1) in a bout for Rodriguez's IBF female Bantamweight title. On paper it looked a mismatch, and on the scorecards afterwards it also looked like a mismatch. In reality however it was a competitive, and fun bout that saw both women engaging in a memorable and exciting bout.
Early on it did look a bit one sided with Rodriguez taking control with her razor like jab, sharp combinations and excellent movement. By the middle rounds however things were becoming more and more competitive with Tsunami landing some solid right hands. It seemed however that whilst the rounds were competitive, and that Tsunami was landing the more solid shots, Rodriguez was winning the rounds on work rate with her working coming from her exceptional jab.
Tsunami, as we've seen in the past, didn't know when she was beaten and in round 8 she moved up a gear and managed to drive Rodriguez to the ropes where she had some notable success. Rodriguez, to her credit, got herself safe and returned fire though it was clear tat Tsunami was coming on strong and looking to take a slowing Rodriguez out down the stretch.
In round 10 we again saw Tsunami move up a gear and from the bell she swiftly forced Rodriguez on to the ropes where the two fighters traded shots before Rodriguez escapes. Moments later the champion was up against another rope with the two fighters again throwing leather at each other. Before the round was over they had traded shots all over the ring in what was the fights stand out round. Unfortunately for Tsunami it was too little too late.
When it came to the decision there was no real drama. There had been competitive action, but on the whole it was Rodriguez coming out on top. That was shown on the cards which had the bout 100-91, 99-91 and 98-92 in favour of the Chilean world champion, who fully deserved the win.