It may have been time for Yaegashi to have a sleeper fighter but we'll be honest we didn't expect to see it come against a Mexican fighter, especially when on considers the Latin passion and fury that Mexican's are known for.
Unfortunately Oscar Blanquet (32-6-1, 23) seemed to have less of that Latin machismo than most other Mexican's and instead of putting on, as we expected, a battle with Yaegashi the Mexican was happier to hold, hug and generally spoil.
In his defense Blanquet did start well, he was throwing his fast jabs, using his reach and trying to keep Yaegashi defensively busy. This worked for a number of the opening rounds with Yaegashi fighting as a counter puncher, looking for, and landing, his left hook.
The work of Blanquet, over the first 4 rounds, was keeping the bout competitive and with the WBC's open scoring in effect it was clear to say the judges weren't against him and with scores of 39-37, 38-38 and 37-39 that was a split decision draw through 4 rounds.
After the fourth round Nieves became ever more negative as Yaegashi began to have more and more success. The little Japanese fighter, defending his WBC and Ring Magazine Flyweight titles for the first time really started to look like the fighter we all know and love. He pretty much swept the middle rounds with his classier punching and his aggression whilst Nieves seemed happier to hold, fall down in the clinch, complain and generally try to make things messy.
The messy action ended up effecting everything and Yaegashi twice landed blows that were ruled low, the second of which saw him deducted a point in round 8, the same round that he would score the fight's only knockdown. Although Yaegashi won the round 9-8 as a result of the knockdown and deduction it was obvious he was getting annoyed by an opponent who was less and less co-operative in making a fight.
When the open scoring after round 8 was known it was clear that Yaegashi was in a comfortable lead. His dominance through the middle rounds had opened up a comfortable, but not safe margin. The Japanese fighter made sure that he extended the lead in rounds 9 and 10 as he took both rounds before completely easing off in the final 2 rounds effectively telling Blanquet that he'd now need to make a fight of things.
Blanquet did, at least in the final round, take the initiative a little though by then Yaegashi has secured such a wide margin that the Japanese fighter needed to just stay on his feet to win, something he did with little to no trouble.