Japanese star Kazuto Ioka efficiently defended his WBO junior bantamweight title for the third time with a hard-fought 12-round unanimous determination win over Mexico’s Francisco Rodriguez Jr. on the Ota-Metropolis Gymnasium in Tokyo on Wednesday. All three judges scored the bout 116-112.
Ioka, who’s rated No. 3 by The Ring at 115 kilos, was sluggish out of the blocks, however he steadily solved the model and landed the simpler punches within the center classes. That ebb and circulate continued into the later rounds and among the motion was of the best caliber.
Rodriguez, who’s rated No. 7 by The Ring, obtained off to an important begin, pressuring the defending titleholder and scoring properly with proper fingers whereas chopping away to the physique. Nonetheless, because the tempo dropped, Ioka, a four-weight world titleholder, started to have his personal success and he appeared to drag again the deficit.
The champion scored with pace and accuracy within the center portion of the battle and Rodriguez’s tempo dropped. It appeared just like the Mexican was quick on concepts at this stage, however he matched Ioka punch for punch in a terrific 10th spherical and displayed loads of braveness.
It was all Ioka (27-2, 15 KOs) down the stretch and a few glorious counter punching lower Rodriguez over the left eye and blood additionally poured from his nostril.
Regardless of a No. 10 pound-for-pound score, Ioka stays on the skin wanting in at 115 kilos. Ring Journal champion Juan Francisco Estrada, former multi-weight world titleholder Roman Gonzalez and Srisaket Sor Rungvisai have confirmed to be the highest worldwide points of interest on this division.
Ioka (27-2, 15 KOs) hopes to unify with long-reigning IBF titleholder Jerwin Ancajas in his subsequent bout.
Rodriguez drops to 34-5-1 (24 KOs).