By Michael Collins: Unbeaten Kell Brook (29-0, 19 KO’s) did a demolition job on an outclassed Hector Saldivia (41-3, 32 KO’s), stopping him in the 3rd round in this IBF welterweight eliminator bout at the Motorpoint Arena, Sheffield, Yorkshire, United Kingdom. Saldivia was knocked down twice in the fight, once in the 1st and a final time in the 3rd. In the 3rd, Brook hit Saldivia with a hard jab that knocked him down. Saldivia got back to his feet but referee Howard Foster rightfully stopped the fight at :28 of the round.
Brook had Saldivia down in the 1st from a right hand. The remainder of that round saw Saldivia running and just trying to keep fro getting knocked out. The second round was mostly Brook landing jabs, uppercuts, right hands and left hooks while Saldivia took them clean in the face like a good sparring partner. In the tail end of the round, Saldivia came alive, landing a handful of shots that had Brook in distress. However, the round ended before Saldivia could do anything more.
There really wasn’t much to the fight. Saldivia threw next to no punches and was put down in the 1st round from a right hand. What jumped out at you in watching this fight was how did Saldivia get ranked #3 by the IBF? He looked worse than any of the top 15 contenders for any of the sanctioning bodies, and just made the fight look like a joke from start to finish. It was clear from watching the first 10 seconds of the fight that Saldivia didn’t belong out there, and the IBF didn’t do him or their own company any service by ranking Saldivia so highly when he didn’t have the skills to be fighting at this level.
Brook will now be fighting Devon Alexander or IBF welterweight champion Randall Bailey next for the IBF title. It’s too bad that Brook didn’t really beat anyone to deserve the title shot because this fight tonight was a face. Saldivia had already been knocked out in the 1st round by Said Ouali and it’s still unclear what the IBF was thinking when they ranked Saldivia so highly after that fight.
In other boxing results on the card:
Kenny Anderson TKO 5 Robin Reid
Jamie McDonnell TKO 9 Darwin Zamora