NAOYA INOUE blasted out outdated rival Nonito Donaire in lower than 5 minutes to grow to be the world champion at bantamweight. The gorgeous two-way violence of their first encounter, which Inoue received on factors in 2019, was at all times unlikely to be replicated. So it proved; ultimately, this rematch was a one-sided mauling.
Each made a cautious begin with Donaire on the entrance foot, taking the battle to Inoue as each probed with jabs. There was a sense, nonetheless, that it was solely matter of time earlier than somebody broke by way of.
It occurred simply earlier than the bell. As 39-year-old Donaire formed to return ahead, Inoue nailed him with a proper to the temple that despatched Donaire down closely. The veteran made it to his toes, however he appeared unsteady. Abruptly, in his 49th battle, after a number of years of teasing however avoiding Father Time, there appeared like no escape.
The referee, Michael Griffin, accomplished the eight depend and wiped down Donaire’s gloves however the bell went earlier than Inoue might benefit from a dazed Donaire. The one-minute break was not sufficient time for the “Filipino Flash” to reset successfully.
Inoue got here out trying to construct on that first spherical success and hunted Donaire with goal. A left hook to the top despatched Donaire staggering and Inoue drove him alongside the ropes with a barrage of blows. With Donaire in opposition to the ropes, trying on the brink, Inoue bombarded him with hooks and uppercuts from each fingers. The referee was poised and able to step in when a gutsy Donaire let his personal fingers go. However it might be a ultimate hurrah, not a comeback.
Inoue unleashed one other collection of punches that despatched Donaire teetering to the boundaries once more. Donaire tried a slide alongside the ropes, his lone escape route, however he ended up in a nook and Inoue drove a straight proper by way of Donaire’s guard that despatched his head snapping to the fitting and into the trail of a deadly left hook that dumped him on the canvas in a nook. The referee didn’t have to depend as Donaire was not going to rise up. After a few years of defying the percentages, of preventing again, it needed to take somebody as sensible and cruel as Inoue to maintain him down. Griffin waved the battle over after simply 1-25 of the second spherical.
The 29-year-old Inoue is 23-0 (20), together with 12 inside the space finishes in his final 13 fights. Solely Donaire had heard the ultimate bell.
Inoue, who owns three of 4 sanctioning physique straps at bantamweight, mentioned afterwards that he intends to remain within the division till he’s received the fourth one – the WBO belt – which is presently owned by Paul Butler. After that, he plans to place the super-bantamweight division on discover the place fights with the likes of Stephen Fulton Jnr might await the 29-year-old.
It’s certainly time for Donaire to carry an finish to a exceptional profession which has seen him win belts at flyweight, bantamweight, super-bantamweight and featherweight. He turned skilled in 2001 after profitable the US Nationwide title however did not qualify on the US Olympic Trials for the 2000 Olympic Video games. He has after all been written off earlier than, after losses to Jessie Magdaleno in 2016 and Carl Frampton in 2018. He rebounded many times, however by no means earlier than has he been overwhelmed so convincingly. Regardless, his place as one of many best Filipino boxers of all time is safe.
In a 12-round struggle for the Japanese super-bantamweight title youthful brother Takuma Inoue outscored champion Gakuya Furuhashi with the judges seeing Inoue the winner on scores of 120-108 twice and 119-109.