Alma Ibarra proving she’s ready for undisputed welterweight champion Jessica McCaskill
Kandi Wyatt (10-3, 3 KOs) and Alma Ibarra (9-1, 4 KOs) are ladies on a quest for a world welterweight title shot. At the Sycuan Casino in El Cajon, California the two faced off in a WBA world eliminator in a scheduled eight-round contest.
Both have previously fought for a world title. For Kandi Wyatt, she lost on two previous attempts at 140 pounds. In March of 2019, the 30-year-old from Calgary, Alberta, Canada was stopped in six rounds by former WBO women’s world junior welterweight champion Christina Linardatou. Wyatt came up short again in her second world title attempt, losing by decision to Kali Reis for the vacant WBA women’s world 140-pound title in November of 2020.
Ibarra was on the losing end to Raquel Miller for the vacant WBA ‘interim’ 154 pound title in November of 2019. She fights for her son Matthias who suffers from hemophilia, a disorder that causes the blood to not clot normally. She also fights to overcome a very traumatic last 18 months.
In March of 2020, while attempting to qualify for the 2020 Mexican Olympic team, her son was hospitalized. During that same qualifying tournament, as her child was suffering, Ibarra was kidnapped and physically assaulted! She views the fight as more than a boxing match. It’s another step removed from what she described as hell.
A FAST START
Ibarra has fought most of her career at 154 and 160 pounds, while Wyatt has spent most of her career at 140. However, this fight was not necessarily about size. It was the skill of the Mexican that stood out early and often.
From the opening bell, she set the tone and never let up. The jab was sharp and accurate all night long as Ibarra did a beautiful job of boxing from mid-range and on the outside. When she fought on the front foot, Ibarra was just as dominant.
Wyatt tried hard and came forward all night long. The problem was, she didn’t have the footwork the cut off the ring. At certain moments, the Canadian was leaning excessively, which left her wide open for counter-shots.
IT’S GETTING UGLY
The action went from Ibarra controlling the action to her in domination mode. Round seven saw her put on a show as she continued to catch Wyatt with uppercut after uppercut. To seal matters, she nailed Kandi Wyatt with a right hand to the chin seconds from the final bell. The judge scored the fight in the Mexican’s favor by a comfortable unanimous decision (80-72, 79-73, 78-74).
BRING ON MCCASKILL!!!
“Emphatic” may not give Ibarra justice to describe her performance. With this win, she will become the WBA mandatory challenger for undisputed women’s welterweight champion Jessica McCaskill. It’s a fight that Ibarra desperately wants. Feeling disrespected by McCaskill’s manager, Rick Ramos, she had a message for the two following her win.
“More than sending a message to Jessica McCaskill, it’s more of a message to Rick Ramos. You said I was shit, you said I couldn’t fight. I showed you tonight that I can fight. I will see you in the ring.”
Alma Ibarra certainly showed that she can indeed fight and is more than worthy of a matchup against the undisputed champion. If Rick Ramos decides to put his charge in the ring with Ibarra, McCaskill would be in for one of the toughest fights of her career.
By: Michael Wilson Jr.