Jaime Munguia successfully makes his third title defense
WBO junior middleweight champion Jaime Munguia scored a tougher than expected unanimous decision win over Takeshi Inoue in a barnburner of a fight. This was the hardest fight of the 22 year-old’s career so far.
Faced with a shorter opponent who is awkward and likes to lead with his head, Munguia chose to box early on. In round three, the defending champ started to find a home with the left hook to the body and in the fourth incorporated right hands to the head.
However towards the end of the fourth, Inoue began to trap Munguia on the ropes, roughing him up and landing punches of his own.
During the middle rounds, Munguia started to sit down and land clean power shots on the face and body of Inoue. The challenger from Tokyo kept his promise to never take a backward step as he constantly charged forward into the champion’s chest.
Not only did he keep the pressure on his opponent, he also found success with looping right hands and left hooks to the head in round eight; arguably his best round of the fight.
The 5’8” challenger was making the taller 6’0” champion work hard as the fight ventured into the later rounds. The challenger kept pressing the action and landed a big right hand late in the tenth that stunned Munguia.
The champion would reciprocate and stun his opponent as the round came to a close. This fight had evolved into a back and forth war.
Munguia showed championship quality in the last round by backing Inoue up with big shots and using more of his IQ before attacking.
An argument can be made that Munguia’s troubles making junior middleweight is starting to take a toll on him. The champion looked weary as the fight wore on, however, credit should also be given to Inoue who is a true warrior and is tough as an oak.
Next up for Munguia is a defense against mandatory challenger and Irish-born Australian Dennis Hogan. That is of course a unification with either Jarrett Hurd or the winner of Tony Harrison vs Jermell Charlo 2 cannot be worked out!
By: Michael Wilson Jr.