The recently-concluded weekend was quite a big one for Pinoy boxing, as two new Filipino world champions were crowned, highlighted of course by the triumphant return of eight division world champion Manny Pacquiao.
Sunday morning at the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Pacquiao returned to his old, aggressive form, overwhelming Argentinian Lucas Matthysse to capture the WBA (Regular) Welterweight World Championship after a seventh-round TKO.
The 39-year old Pacquiao came out aggressive and dropped Matthysse thrice throughout the seven-round affair to score his first knockout win since 2009.
In 69 professional contests, Pacquiao now has 60 wins to go with eleven world championship reigns. This is his first run with the WBA championship.
Earlier in the card, Cebuano featherweight Jhack Tepora realized a childhood dream by stopping Mexican Edivaldo Ortega in nine rounds to capture the interim WBA Featherweight World Championship.
Seemingly behind on the judges’ scorecards, Tepora made sure that it didn’t have to go to a decision, as the Pinoy floored Ortega with an uppercut, before eventually unloading a vicious flurry of punches to put the Mexican away in the ninth round.
Unbeaten in 22 professional bouts, Tepora scored his 17th win via knockout and his first taste of world championship gold.
Two days earlier in Kobe, Japan, Cotabato’s Vic Saludar inserted himself in the Pinoy boxing history books after scoring a unanimous decision win over Japan’s own Ryuya Yamanaka to become the new WBO Minumumweight World Champion.
A seventh-round knockdown capped off a dominant performance from Saludar who captured the WBO’s 108-pound strap in his second attempt.
Saludar follows in the footsteps of Eric Jamili, Merlito Sabillo, and Donnie Nietes as Filipino boxers to capture the WBO Minimumweight World Championship.
In the undercard, a non-title bout, Gabriel “Flash” Elorde’s grandson Juan Miguel Elorde (26-1, 14 KOs) destroyed Thai Ratchason Sawangsoda (12-3, 12 KOs).
(abs-cbn sports news)