MANILA (Apr. 19) — Before a roaring crowd at the Araneta Center billed as a double header: “The Flash and The Furious,” two young Filipino boxers won separate impressive victories and emerged as world champions in their respective divisions.
Junior flyweight Filipino American Brian “The Hawaiian Punch” Viloria knocked out Ulissis Solis of Mexico in the 11th round in their championship match. Viloria, the former World Boxing Council light flyweight champion, was regarded as the underdog before the match. Solis spoiled earlier attempts of three Filipinos — Rodel Mayol, Bert Batwang and Glenn Donaire, elder brother of Nonito — to strip him of his title in the past.
But Viloria came aggressive in the first round, punching away at Solis’ defenses, sneaking a right jabs and repeated the same in the ensuing rounds that got Solis in trouble towards the 11th round. Viloria bloodied Solis with a cut each in both eyes before he finally delivered a solid right punch across Solis’ jaw and sent him crumbling to the canvas. He struggled to get on his feet again but Referree Bruce McTavish reached the count of ten.
Viloria was ahead on all scorecards when the end came at 2:56 of the 11th round, 96-92. The win boosted Viloria’s record to 25-2-2 with 15 knockouts. Solis, who has beaten three Filipino boxers in the last two years, dropped to 28-2-2 with 20 KOs.
Viloria captured the International Boxing Federation (IBF) junior flyweight title.
In the main event, Filipino American flyweight Nonito “The Flash” Donaire, retained his IBF and International Boxing organization world flyweight titles Brian Viloria, right connects a punch to Ulisses Solis.with a fourth-round technical knockout of unbeaten Mexican Raul “Cobra” Martinez, who came to the fight with 24-0 record with 14 knockouts.
Donaire, the 26-year-old champion from San Leandro, California, threw unrelenting and powerful punches to Martinez that sent him down to the canvass three times before delivering a short uppercut to the jaw with 2:42 minutes left in the fourth round. Referee Pete Podgorski stopped the fight after seeing Martinez go down for the fourth time and declared the bout over.
In the opening round, Donaire, a southpaw, connected solid right hooks to the challenger’s face and sent Martinez at once to the canvas with 50 seconds in the clock. Moments later, Donaire threw a combination punch to Martinez that sent him down on his knees for the second time.
A left hook by Donaire connected on top of Martinez’s head and down went the Mexican American challenger in the second round. By then, Martinez did not cope up with the quickness of Donaire and was never really in the fight.
Although Martinez fought with his guard up for much of the fight, Donaire used his speed and reach advantage to pound on him relentlessly landing Martinez his first loss.
Before the fight, Donaire had said his title defense against undefeated Martinez would be his last as a flyweight and admitted he had problems having to sacrifice to make the 112-pound limit. He said his manager, Cameron Dunkin, was planning a World Boxing Organization title challenge against newly crowned WBO super flyweight champion Jose Lopez of Puerto Rico for his next bout.
Donaire, born on Nov. 16, 1982 in Bohol, was raised in General Santos City, like Manny Pacquiao, before moving at the age of 10 to San Leandro, California. He won the IBF/IBO titles with a sensational, one-punch knockout of Vic Darchinyan on July 7, 2007.
On the other hand, Viloria, was born on Nov. 24, 1980 in Honolulu, Hawaii.