Earlier today fight fans saw what is likely to be the end of the round for a modern day legend, and saw an unbeaten champion secure the biggest win of their career, and potentially even take the proverbial touch from the man the beat.
The bout in question saw WBA Minimumweight "super" champion Knockout CP Freshmart (24-0, 9) retain his title with a clear, yet somewhat competitive, decision win against former long term WBC champion Wanheng Menayothin (55-3-0-1, 19), who now seems set to ride off into the sunset.
The two men, who know each other well and have partaken in exhibitions and public spars in the past, started slowly with both looking to establish their jabs. As the rounds went on however Knockout always seemed to have an extra gear and that little bit more energy than the 36 year old faded former champion. Wanheng never looked outclassed as such, but was out worked, and out hustled, and simply out-youthed essentially.
The younger, bigger, Knockout established himself in rounds 2 and 3, and whilst Wanheng would always fire back, and land some glorious counter shots, he could never keep up the intensity or work rate needed to really change the course of the bout, at leats not until it was too late.
After 6 rounds it was clear Knockout was winning, and although Wanheng did mount something of a comeback in the second half of the bout, it always seemed like Knockout had control over things, regularly smiling at his foe. It didn't seem so much like a taunting smile, but almost like Knockout was enjoying having a fight with someone who is very much a close friend and a legend of the lower weights. He seemed to be enjoying every moment of the fight, and having questions asked of his boxing ability, and answering them.
By the 12 round it really didn't feel like there had been much drama, though there was some very nice sequences of action from both in the second half of the bout. It did however feel like their was a clear winner, with Knockout comfortably winning, despite losing a few rounds here and there. The was no doubting this was one of, if not the, most complete performance of his career, and it almost seemed like being in their with someone he respected drew the best from him. It was, admittedly, a faded Wanheng, but still Wanheng, and still a man Knockout clearly regards in high esteem.
When we went to the scorecards, their no doubting who the rightful winner was, and with scores of 116-112, 117-111 and 119-109, Knockout retained his title. The 119-109 seemed very harsh against Wanheng, but the other two scores pretty much matched our, at 117-113.
Their is a feel that had this bout taken place 3 or 4 years ago, when Wanheng was still in the back end of his prime, he likely would have won. The 36 year old Wanheng we saw today however has slipped a long way, and simply lacked the fire, combinations and drive that had seen him have such a lengthy WBC title reign.
In late 2018 we saw WBO Super Flyweight title bout in Macau that saw Filipino great Filipino great Donnie Nietes (43-2-6, 23) score arguably the most notable win of his career, becoming a 4-weight world champion as he took a split decision over Japanese star Kazuto Ioka (29-2, 15) [井岡一翔]. Sadly for Nietes he failed to build on that win, vacating the title in pursuit of bigger things, essentially giving up his proverbial bargaining chip. In the end he would sit out for more than 2 years, whilst Ioka went on to win the title Nietes gave up, and then built his own legacy with impressive wins against Jeyvier Cintron and Kosei Tanaka.
Today, most than 3 and a half years later, we saw the men face off again, with Nietes entering as the mandatory challenger for Ioka's title.
This time around the bout really didn't click like their first encounter, with both men looking older, less energetic and less hungry than they did in Macau. Sadly this lead to a much lower, less exciting and less competitive bout.
From the opening round Ioka, the much younger man, looked like someone with a lot more left in the tank. He was quicker, sharper, more active and managed to find the bodu of Nietes. The body work of Ioka, which has long been under-rated, was a key facet through out the fight and he landed a variety of great body shots round after round, tryign to take the legs away from the 40 year old Nietes.
Impressively however Nietes' legs which actually his major asset, along with his time, as he managed to counter Ioka just enough to keep the champion the champion honest and prevent him from marching in without a care in the world. Those counters forced Ioka to remain respectful, but they dodn't stop him from intelligently controlling the bout, round after round, with clean, accurate shots. He simply out working Nietes, who's work at times was incredibly low.
The bout very much felt like one that was very samey through out. Ioka looked classy, intelligent, and like a man who methodically breaking down a decent, but faded veteran. Nietes on the other hand looked to connect with jabs early in rounds, and counter when Ioka upped the tempo. The only real changes seemed to come in the second half, as Nietes would end up on the ropes occasionally, where it seemed like he could be at risk of more body shots, but the veteran manage to avoid taking too much punishment, and actually put up a better effort in the later stages of the fight.
Given the one sided natural of the bout overall it did lack drama, though that changed in round 10 when Nietes suffered a cut on his right eyelid. It was a nasty cut that saw him being taken over to the ringside doctor. He was fit to continue, but the cut did seem to make him even more negative, almost as if he was happy to see the final bell, rather than win.
After 12 rounds there was really no questioning the result, with Ioka taking a unanimous decision. The only question mark was how many rounds the judges could find to give to Nietes. In the end, not many. The scores were 120-108, 18-110 and 117-111, giving Ioka a clear decision win, and revenge for his 2018 loss. It was however a bout that left the question marks about the future of both men. Nietes looks like a man who needs to consider retirement, whilst Ioka seemed to have lost a clear step or two and wouldn't be favoured, or even regarded as evens, against any of the other top 115lbs fighters on the planet right now.
Just moments ago we saw a new WBC Featherweight champion being crowned as Filipino Mark Magsayo (24-1, 16) lost the title in his first defense, losing a split decision to unbeaten Mexican Rey Vargas (36-0, 22), who becomes a 2-weight champion.
On paper the bout had the potential to be something really ugly, given that Vargas has a reputation for making stinking bouts and Magsayo being very hot and cold. Thankfully however we ended up with a genuinely solid, exciting, entertaining bout that had a bit of everything, including drama late on, a high tempo early on, and some really good back and forth action.
The first two rounds were really close as both men started well, and fought each other tit for tat whilst finding their groove. We felt Magsayo did the better work in round 1, but that Vargas seemed to find his groove in round 2, as he started to establish control of range, and land clean, hard shots to Magsayo.
Through the middle portion of the bout Vargas took control of the action, seeming dominating from round 3, as he made Magsayo look very flawed. Vargas regularly stood his ground, landing clean, heavy shots, he was busier than Magsayo, he was more accurate and whilst it seemed his shots didn't have nasty power on them they certainly appeared to take a toll on Magsayo who was clearly slowing down in rounds 5 and 6, a result of the sweeping body shots of Vargas. Magsayo wasn't just taking shot, he was also being made to miss with his own, looking really raw and crude at times.
The one thing Magsayo had going for him was his power, and he certainly showed that in round 8. He was out landed again, but did manage to land a really good right hand late in the round. The shot was essentially a warning of what was to come in round 9, when a huge right late in the round dropped Vargas. It was a huge moment in the fight, the biggest in fact. He beat the count but looked buzzed for the rest of the round. He appeared appeared to be hurt in round 10, though Magsayo foolishly didn't press the issue, instead giving Vargas the space and time he needed to clear his head and get his feet underneath himself.
Magsayo's failure to jump on Vargas was a huge mistake and by round 11 Vargas had recovered his legs, which proved vital as he re-established control in the final 2 rounds. Those were key for him in the eyes of the judges, as they decided that he had done enough to edge the decision, with scores of 115-112, twice, in his favour against a dissenting card of 114-113, in favour of Magsayo.
Late on Saturday night we saw a new IBF Minimumweight champion being crowned in Mexico as local fighter Daniel Valladares (26-3-1, 15) over-came Filipino fighter Mark Rene Cuarto (20-3-2, 11), and dethroned the Filipno who was looking to make his second defense of the title, in a fight that was something of a hard to watch, sloppy affair with an awful lot of incidental head clashes and wrestling.
Early on Valladares tried to box, using good footwork, defensive skills and technical boxing to land clean at range and control the tempo. The action picked up in round 2 after Cuarto had seen what he challenger had, and in round 3 Cuarto some of his best shots, as he found a home for right hands that bothered the challenger. They were good rounds from the champion, but he didn't really look as skilled or as heavy handed as ghe challenger.
From there the bout descended into a bit of a downward spiral with head clashes marring round 4, which saw Valladares get the worst of them. Head clashes continued to play a role through the middle portion of the bout, as Cuarto had some really good moments whilst Valladares was left bloodied, damaged, cut and forced to pass a doctors inspection in round 7. The action could, genuine, have been stopped not due to the severity of the cuts, but due to the fact it was clear more head clashes would be happening, and they did.
Despite being cut Valladares showed a lot of grit in round 8, though did seem to touch down and perhaps should have had a knockdown scored against him, before having another doctor's inspection at the start of the following round.
The cuts were playing an issue for Valladares, who seemed to be more hurt and annoyed by them than anything Cuarto actually threw in the later rounds, with Cuarto further angering people in round 10 when his tape repeatedly came undone forcing the referee to deduct a point, something he could have done for the head clashes.
Having worked hard through much of the middle portion of the bout, and been fighting through cuts, Valladares slowed down in round 11 with the bout becoming a messy clinch fest for the final final 2 rounds. Which made an already ugly and frustrating bout even more ugly and frustrating. By the end of the bout both men looked tired, both swollen and busted, and although it had been messy there were exciting moments.
As we went to the scorecards it seemed hard to have this as anything but a clear win for Valladares, despite the cuts, and the punishment he took from the head of Cuarto. Surprisingly however this was closer on the cards than expected with scores of 115-112 and 116-111 for Valladares and a bizarre 114-113 to Cuarto, to give Valladares the win, and see him become the new IBF Minimumweight champion.
Following the it bout, it was reported that Cuarto's manager Sean Gibbons would be seeking a rematch due to the point deduction and the botched knockdown call.
Just moments ago we saw WBC Super Flyweight champion Jesse "Bam" Rodriguez (16-0, 11) put on a performance that belied his 22 years of age as he didn't just score his first defense, but did so in dominant fashion against former 2-time champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (50-6-1, 43) [ศรีสะเกษ นครหลวงโปรโมชั่น], who took a genuine pasting at the hands of the incredible champion.
Going in to the bout it seemed the bout would be a case of Bam's speed, timing and movement, against Srisaket's power, toughness and strength. And in the early rounds that did seem to be the case with Rodriguez landing clean shots whilst using his footwork to create angles, keeping Srisaket from landing clean and chipping away at the Thai great. It was a perfect start for Bam who picked the Thai apart with smart body shots and clean headshots without taking much in return.
It wasn't really until round 4 that Bam in any trouble at all. And even that trouble was very short lived, as he took a body shot late in the round, a body shot that he seemed to be bothered by, albeit only for a moment. Just a round later however Bam was back in total control, whilst Srisaket seemed unable to land anything at all, whilst taking hard shots upstairs and downstairs. He was landing at will, and the only thing keeping Srisaket in the bout was his incredible toughness and iron chin. Just a round later however that iron chin was beginning to show cracks and in round 7 Srisaket was dropped, albeit in something of a flash knockdown as Srisaket claimed he slipped. Following the knockdown Bam continued to beat up Srisaket to the end of the round.
Between round 7 and 8 the DAZN camera team showed Srisaket in his corner and it seemed very much like he had something of a resigned look on his face. It was the look of a man who was trying everything he could, but nothing worked. It was the face of a man who knew he was beaten, but didn't want to accept it. It was the face of an old legend who's career was coming to an end, though he likely didn't realise how close the end was.
The 8th saw Srisaket under pressure early. He tried to fight back, but really had no response, he was begging to become something of a punch bag, with Rodriguez landing at will, and switching from head to body. The headshots seemed to bother Srisaket, but it was the body shots that really broke him down and forced on to the retreat. With Srisaket backing on to the ropes Bam unleashed on him, landing really clean head shots, one after the other until finally the referee stepped in, saving Srisaket from further punishment.
At the age of 35 Srisaket's legendary career is likely over. He managed to record one of the most notable careers of any Thai in the sport, having success not just in Thailand, where he win his first world title against Yota Sato, but also in the US, where he scored two wins over Roman Gonzalez and also beat Juan Francisco Estrada. His career is that of a certified Thai great. Sadly though this is almost certainly the end of it, at least the top level.
As for Bam. The sports has a genuine star on it's hand, and he should be regarded as the front runner for Fighter of the Year, with this win following a victory over Carlos Cuadras, he should be on the pound for pound rankings, and his team should be looking to match him against other top fighters. There is talk of him moving down in weight. to Flyweight, though selfishly, we'd prefer to see him stay at 115lbs and face the likes of Roman Gonzalez, Kazuto Ioka, Juan Francisco Estrada and Fernando Daniel Martinez whilst cleaning out the division. Regardless of what he ends up doing, fans should be taking notice of him, and following him. We could well be watching the career and development of a generational fighter here.
Just moments ago in San Antonio we saw WBA "Super" an IBF Super Bantamweight champion Murodjon Akhmadaliev (11-0, 8) [Ахмадалиев, Муроджон Кахарович] retain his titles, and record his third defense, as he defeated American challenger Ronny Rios (33-4, 16) with a 12th round TKO.
The bout started slowly, with both men getting behind their jabs with both lookign to see what the other hand, and ease their own way into the bout. Through the opening stanza there was little to pick them apart, with Akhmadaliev looking the crisper, sharper, faster fighter, but outside of a single left hand he didn't land too much of note. What was interesting through the round was Rios using a lot of feints, that kept Akhmadaliev on his toes.
Rounds 2 and 3 saw the tempo slowly improve as the fight gradually warmed up with Rios cranking up the pressure round by round.
The first real talking point came in round 4, when an uppercut to the body of Rios left him in agony, that had to tough out. He looked really hurt, but somehow stayed on his feet, as Akhmadaliev tried to close the show but failed. The body shot showed that Akhmadaliev had the power to hurt the challenger, but he failed to repeat the feat as Rios showed his toughness and pressed more. That pressure did see him have success, but he was taking more than he was giving as Akhmadaliev proved to be an accurate puncher, especially with his jab, which helped neutralise the pressure of the challenger.
In round 6, whilst controlling the bout, Akhmadaliev suffered an injury to his left hand, which was a shame, as it left him a one-handed fighter. Despite that the skills of Akhmadaliev shined through as he continued to use his jab and movement well, and out boxed Rios, who kept pressing but having limited success. In round 8 it seemed that Rios was becoming aware that the champion was 100% and pressed a lot more, however that left him in range for Akhmadlaiev's right hook which began to land at will, and took a toll on Rios who was forced to back off late in the round.
Rios managed to see out round 8, despite being hurt late in the round, but continued to take punishment from the right hand of Akhamadliev through round 9. In round 10 Rios pressed more intensely, and it was one of his better rounds, but he continued to struggle to consistent leather as Akhmadaliev's footwork and educated right hand limited the challenger's success overall.
Rios had some of his best moments in round 10, but he failed to build on that in round 11 as Akhmadaliev consistently landed his right hand through the 11th round and even had Rios backing up at times.
With Akhmadaliev clearly up, and fighting injured, it seemed like the bout would be going the distance as we headed into the final round. Akhmadaliev however fought like a man with other intentions and came out in round 12 looking for a finish. He dropped Rios with just over a minute left, Rios beat the count but was under immediate pressure when the fight resumed with Akhmadaliev finishing off Rios as the referee stepped in to save the challenger.
Sadly the hand injury will likely keep Akhmadaliev out of the ring for a while, and after that he is likely going to be forced to face mandatory challenger Marlon Tapales before talks of a divisional super fight with Stephen Fulton can be realised. Sadly that makes it seem likely we won't get that massive undisputed title bout until 2023. As for Rios he showed his toughness, but in the end he was very much second best through out the bout.
On Friday night Florida played host to a world title fight, as WBO Light Flyweight champion Jonathan "Bomba" Gonzalez (26-3-1-1, 14) successfully defended his title for the first time, as he over-came the talented, but under-sized, Filipino challenger Mark Anthony Barriga (11-2, 2).
Early on the boxing skills of Barriga were on show, as he rocked Gonzalez in the opening round, and seemed to have the skills to out box the champion who looked surprisingly apprehensive at times, despite the fact that Barriga isn't a noted puncher. It was high level, high speed chess early on, with Barriga getting the better of it.
Sadly for the Filipino however as the bout went on his boxing skills proved not to be enough, and although he regularly backed Gonzalez up he couldn't ever pin him down, as the footwork and movement of Gonzalez kept him safe and allowed him to pot shot Barriga, who followed Gonzalez rather than cutting Gonzalez off.
Sadly for Barriga the later rounds did not go his way at all, as Gonzalez began to turn the screw in round 9. He became more aggressive, he was more willing to use his weight, size and try to bully Barriga around. That had success in tiring Barriga out, and left the Filipino more and more open to being caught by the heavier shots of Gonzalez, who could never land clean enough to Barriga, but was being outlanded by the champion who seemed to do enough to eek out a very close but fair victory.
After 12 rounds the judges turned in the scorecards. The first of those was 115-113 with the other two being 117-111. We thought the 117-111 scores were harsh, but it was clear that Gonzalez was the rightful winner, and he showed some nice touches here, but we do worry about him against the best at 108lbs, especially given how Barriga managed to hurt him early on and how he had to rely on his size to over-come Barriga, rather than his boxing. That will be a major issue against fighters like Hiroto Kyoguchi and Kenshiro Teraji, who are both strong and powerful Light Flyweights.
As for Barriga we'd love to see him return to his natural Minimumweight division, where he really can make a mark on the world level. Sadly at 108lbs he lacks the physicality and the power needed against the top fighters in the division, and it's a deep division as well meaning there isn't going to be an easy title for him to grab.
A good week for Japanese fighters continued earlier today as WBA Light Flyweight "Super" champion Hiroto Kyoguchi (16-0, 11) [京口 紘人] retained his title, and stopped "regular" champion Esteban Bermudez (14-4-2, 10 ) in a brutal beating in Mexico.
The bout, which seemed like a potentially dangerous one on paper for Kyoguchi, ended up being more of a showcase of his ability, and the ineptitude of the referee, who we really don't ever want to see again.
Kyoguchi started razor sharp, and by the end of the opening round he was using Bermudez's head for target practice, particularly with uppercuts which seemed like they couldn't miss. Bermudez was game, strong, big and tough, but he simple lacked the defenses needed to avoid the uppercuts from Kyoguchi, which landed time and time again. Those uppercuts took a toll in round 2, as he left his man bloodied, from what seemed like 4 or 5 cuts around the face. By the end of round 3 Bermudez was fighting through a crimson mask, and it seemed a stoppage was imminent with Bermudez game, tough but totally out classed.
Amazingly however Bermudez toughed it out, and began to have more success of his own in round 4, with a huge left hook late in the round certainly getting Kyoguchi's attention. He also managed to create some space, limiting the opportunities from Kyoguchi to land the uppercuts that had served him well early on. At range Bermudez was having success and Kyoguchi was slowing down, though was still landing huge right hands and getting the better of the action. The blood from Bermudez began to cover Kyoguchi in round 5, as the two men stood and traded blows, with headclashes happening as a result. In round 6 those headclashes saw the referee deduct a point from Kyoguchi, in what a rather harsh deduction given the headclashes were incidental from both men wanting to fight up close and personal. The point deduction almost became immaterial immediately as towards the end of the round Kyguchi detonated a huge right hand on Bermudez and followed it up, and it seemed like Brmudez was set to go down, but something kept him up.
Sadly for Kyoguchi the deduction in round 6 was followed by another in round 7 as he looked to put the Mexican down and was deducted a point for a rabbit shot as Bermudez touched down. This one was more understandable as a deduction, but seemed a heat of the moment combination rather than anything too malicious. It was by the end of the round however that Bermudez was tiring, and the round had also seen him get through a doctor's inspection on the cut, which seemed like it was making it incredibly hard for him to see shots, and avoid them.
Heading into round 8 Bermudez was bloodied, tiring, battered, beaten and breaking up. Kyoguchi knew it and set off looking for a finish in round 8. He was all over Bermudez from the bell and backed his man on the ropes, unloading shots until the referee finally stepped in and saved Bermudez, who probably should have been saved several shots earlier.
For Kyoguchi this was almost the perfect performance, despite clearly having the crowd against him and the referee, who really had a stinker with the first deduction and with the late stoppage. The "Mad Boy" didn't look at all rusty, despite more than a year out of action, and took out a dangerous, tough and powerful fighter in a fashion that was exciting and would certainly help win over fans.
As for Bermudez, it was clear he was levels below Kyoguchi, however we suspect he also won over fans on the back of this performance. He proved his toughness, his will to win and we would love to see more of him against contenders, perhaps someone like a Shokichi Iwata, a Hasanboy Dusmatov, or a the winner of the scheduled bout between Masamichi Yabuki and Thanongsak Simsri.
As for the division in general, this bout will spark more life into a division that has a lot of potential, but really now needs fights between the top, top names. Any combination of Kyoguchi, Kenshiro Teraji, Jonathan Gonzalez, Elwin Soto or Daniel Matellon, would be great to see later this year.
For those interested, the scores at the time of the stoppage were 66-65, 66-65 and 65-66, with the final one of those cards being nothing short of bizarre.
Earlier today we saw the highly anticipated rematch between Japanese Monster Naoya Inoue (23-0, 20) [井上 尚弥] and Filipino legend Nonito Donaire (41-7, 27), who battled to unify the WBA "super", IBF, WBC and Ring Magazine titles.
The bout was hugely anticipated due, in part, to their brilliant 2019 clash which saw Inoue over-coming a fractured orbital to win a decision over Donaire in the Fight of the Year. This time around we were expecting something just as good, especially given how Donaire had looked since then, blasting out Nordine Oubaali and Reymart Gaballo since that loss.
What few would have anticipated was for Inoue to completely smash Donaire in a way that no one had ever done before.
The opening round started with Donaire looking to land his huge left hook within seconds. It was clear that the "Filipino Flash" wanted to remind Inoue what his power and left hand could do. Sadly for Donaire the shot didn't really land. Following Donaire's earlier left hook Inoue back to box and move, looking for openings and waiting for Donaire to leave a gap. The action seemed tense for a minute, before Inoue began to find a home for his jab, and left Donaire chasing him. The jab of Inoue was sensational, but it wasn't going to hurt Donaire. Instead a left hook with about 35 seconds of round left saw Inoue almost wake Donaire up and the Filipino became more aggressive, before being dropped just moments before the bell from a clinical Inoue right hand. Donaire beat the count, and was lucky there wasn't any of the round left, but it was clear that Inoue didn't want to have this one going rounds.
Given Donaire's excellent chin it was a surprise to see him going down this early, but it was a sign of Inoue's power and a real wake up call to just how spiteful Inoue in Reyes gloves were.
In round 2 Inoue work rate picked up as he looked to take the fight to Donaire, something fighters rarely do. It seemed like Donaire wasn't really expecting to see Inoue go after him like was. Despite being under pressure Donaire did manage try fighting back, but he was wobbled several times by Inoue's power, with the monster backing Donaire on to the ropes and landing a huge right hand. The pressure from Inoue kept coming as he applied an intelligent swarming attack. Donaire tried to fight back but was hurt again, stumbling across the ring. It seemed like he was set to go down but some how he stayed up right, and soon afterwards Inoue was all over him again, unloading to head and body before finally sending Donaire down for the second time in the fight with a clinical left hook, with the referee quickly waving the bout off immediately after the knockdown.
After the bout Inoue attended a press conference and seemed incredibly proud about his performance, whilst explaining he focused on using his speed. He also explained that when he got caught by a left hook he thought he'd give Donaire one back. He also explained that it was like a dream. Notable Inoue also stated that while he is looking to move up to Super Bantamweight he still wants to unify all the Bantamweight titles, and it seems like he wants to face Englishman Paul Butler, the current WBO champion, before moving up in weight. If that bout can't be made by the end of the year however, he will move up in weight.
Inoue also stated that he felt proud to fight against Donaire.
As for Donaire he reportedly cancelled his plans to attend the press conference, and we dare say it is now, finally, time for the legendary Filipino great to hang them up and retire following what has been an incredible career
History is an interesting thing to study, and today we got the latest chapter in a 22 fight saga of Japanese fighters fighting in world title bouts in Europe. A saga that now sees the record standing at 1-21, with the latest loss coming just moments ago, when Joe Cordina (15-0, 9) dethroned Japan's Kenichi Ogawa (26-2-1-1, 18) [尾川 堅一] of the IBF Super Featherweight title, in just 2 rounds.
The bout started interestingly and evenly, with both men finding some success with their jabs, and Ogawa perhaps edging it with some good short right hands and the odd right hook. It was, however, a razor thin and close opening round.
Sadly for Ogawa his success in the opening round wasn't to be replicated in round 2. Instead it was the speed of Cordina that showed as he landed a brutal right hand that sent Ogawa down for the second time in his career, with the first coming just 2 fights ago against Kazuhiro Nishitani. Unlike the Nishitani fight however, he wasn't getting up from this one. Instead he was staying down for the count, despite trying to battle to his feet.
Aged 34 it's almost impossible to now imagine Ogawa getting back to this level, and instead we suspect he might return to Japan for a one off bout before hanging them up. As for Cordina, there appear to be a logical next bout for him against fellow British fighter Zelfa Barrett, who won on the under-card of this bout.
Although Japanese fighters have been willing to travel more often in recent years, it seems hard to think who will give them their second win in Europe, with the only Japanese man so far to have success in Europe at the top level being Naoya Inoue.
World Title Results
Whether you like them or not World Titles add prestige to any bout as a result we've included the results of world title bouts in this special section.