Today we saw another Chinese fighter fighting for a world title, Super Bantamweight Qiu Xiao Jun (20-3, 9), who was regarded by those in China as potentially their best hope for a world title in the coming years. Jun was hoping to become the second Chinese man to become a world champion as he took on Panamanian based Venezuelan veteran Nehomar Cermeno (24-5-1, 14) for the vacant WBA Super Bantamweight title.
On paper Jun had most the advantages. He was fighting at home in China, he was 11 years younger than Cermeno and the rising star of Chinese boxing. Sadly for Jun the advantages didn't really help him as the Chinese slugger was made to look rudimentary through out, with Cermeno, the more polished fighter, picking him off with counters through out.
The bout started slowly but by round 2 it was clear that Cermeno was the much more skilled man and the man who looked in control, scoring a flash knockdown in the second. From then on Jun seemed to really struggle to get into a rhythm or find his range with shots regularly falling wide or going over Cermeno's head whilst Cermeno, the more conservative fighter, was landing counters at will.
In the middle rounds Jun tried to turn the bout around by picking up the pace and forcing Cermeno to work more,that plan however made life easier for Cermeno who found more openings and landed more and more frequently whilst Jun struggled to have any notable success.
Despite the bout being one sided for the most part it did seem like we were on route to a decision, that was until round 12 when Cermeno seemed to stagger a tired looking Jun who failed to respond. A follow up forced the referee to stop the Chinese warrior, who was looking completely spent, despite not going down.
The skill level between the two was huge and although Jun did give it a go he was never really in the fight. Sadly for Chinese boxing this loss comes on the back of other high profile losses for Chinese fighters, including Zou Shiming's loss to Amnat Ruenroeng, Ik Yang's loss to Cesar Rene Cuenca and Xiong Zhao Zhong's recent loss to Jose Antonio Jimenez.
The bad run for Chinese boxing will continue here, but it does seem like the country is on the verge of a boxing revolution. Whether that takes 10, 15 or 20 years it will happen given the growth in the sport. Sadly for Jun it's back to the drawing board.