Abner Mares Set to Fight Yonnhny Perez for Title

By John G. Thompson - Abner Mares 20-0 (13 KO’s) stopped journeyman Felipe Almanza 17-16-4 in the fifth round of their match at Club Nokia in Los Angeles, California this past Thursday evening, setting the stage for an IBF Bantamweight Title fight against Yonnhy Perez 20-0 (14 KO’s) in May. While Almanza did not prove to be the toughest of opposition, the constant aggression and talent of Mares was something to see and a match up between him and the likewise talented Perez will certainly be an entertaining affair.

Almanza has now been stopped nine times and came out on the defensive from the start.. Mares stalked his opponent in the first two rounds as Almanza bobbed and weaved and moved backwards and sideways as fast as he could. Mares caught him in the third with a combination of body shots and an uppercut which put Almanza down. Getting up quickly, Almanza complained about a low blow. The action continued as before with Mares backing up his opponent, showing constant measured aggression. In the fifth round, Mares backed Almanza into a corner and went to work, alternating between body and headshots. Mares landed a good right uppercut after one particular combo and after a delayed reaction during which Mares continued to throw, Almanza went down. The referee stopped the bout immediately with no protest from Almanza.

In other action from Club Nokia, Ronny Rios 10-0 (5 KO’s) of Santa Ana, California stopped Andres Ledesma 15-17-1 with a body shot also in the fifth round. Rios was clearly a local favorite as evident by the enthusiastic crowd chanting throughout the match “Ronny! Ronny!” The punches of Rios seamed crisper and harder early on in the fight and by the fourth round Rios was chasing Ledesma around the ring. Rios landed a right hook in the opening seconds of the fifth round which wobbled Ledesma right into the ropes. Rios moved in for the kill. Throwing a left hook upstairs which was blocked by Ledesma, Rios quickly and intelligently threw the same left hook downstairs to the body, which put Ledesma down and the referee counted him out.

Derek Wilson 5-1-2 (2 KO’s) stormed out of the ring after the judges ruled his bout with Adam Ochoa 2-1-1 (1 KO) a draw after four rounds of action. Wilson dominated the first round using the jab, setting up his hooks, applying calm pressure. In the second, Ochoa started to press the action, and at one point it looked as though he had Wilson hurt and moved in for the stoppage. Wilson fought back, knocking down Ochoa with a series of hooks, though the referee ruled it a push. The third round was competitive, though Wilson seemed to maintain an edge. Ochoa pressed the action in the fourth, knowing he was behind in the score cards and possibly did enough to win the round. One judge had the bout scored correctly at 39-37, though the other two must have given Ochoa the second round and both reached the score of 38-38. Wilson should have fought harder in the final round – after all, only one round can make the difference between a draw and a win in a four round contest.

A fight between Abner Mares and Yonnhy Perez – a fight which pits two undefeated up-and-coming action fighters against one another – cannot be anything less than thrilling. Yonnhy Perez must be given the edge in professional experience having stopped Silence Mabuza in a title eliminator and then won the IBF belt from Joseph Agbeko, following Agbeko’s best win to date in a twelve round unanimous decision over the highly skilled and extremely powerful Vic Darchinyan. Abner Mares himself has no lack of boxing experience, having earned Silver in the 2003 Pan American Games (losing to Cuban sensation Guillermo Rigondeauz), also fighting for Mexico in the 2004 Olympics (losing a controversial decision in the opening rounds), and possessing an amateur record with over one hundred wins. Mares, who has fought his last two bouts at Club Nokia, will now move to nearby Staples Center for the biggest fight of his career against his toughest professional opposition to date.

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Article posted on 26.03.2010

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