Saturday, January 16, 2010

Filipino Pugilists Trump Contenders in Cebu

Bakbakan sa Sinulog was a complete success with the Filipino pugilists sweeping through their foreign opponents convincingly and in very emphatic fashion. ALA Boxing Promotions’ prodigies and the event’s double-headers AJ “Bazooka” Banal and Milan Melindo have successfully trumped their opposition and further improve their records and their chances for a world stage.

Banal effectively used his height, speed, and strength advantage in dispatching Cecilio Boga Santos of Mexico in the fourth round of their non-title bantamweight bout. Santos landed some solid shots but was not quite consistent as he struggled with the young Banal’s physical advantages. The Filipino took no time in administering serious combinations with blistering speed to end the night for the Mexican Santos.

For the main event, Milan Melindo took on the young and slick California-native Anthony Villareal in a very exciting exchange. Villareal, the game champion, was very effective with his low-guard style until he got decked to the canvas by a solid right hook from the Filipino in the first round. Villareal was clearly stunned by Melindo’s power and was very careful throughout the fight.

Melindo was very patient and cool, although he kept on pressing the taller and bigger Villareal. Melindo concocted several combinations that would force the American champion to back down. But Villareal had his moments as well. He clearly won rounds 6, 8, and 10, evidently when he used his quickness and slick defense to slip Melindo’s punches and lands some solid shots of his own.

Round 12 proved to be a thrilling segment of the fight as Melindo, who was clearly ahead on points, decided to trade with the strong-punching Villareal. However, the Filipino proved to be a tough customer as Melindo and Villareal went for a knockout during the dying seconds of the fight.

Melindo won a rightfully-deserved unanimous decision. I scored the fight 7 rounds to 3 in favor of the new WBC Youth Intercontinental Flyweight champion.



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