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Roberto Lerio Regains The Aussie Bantamweight Title

by Ronnie Nathanielsz

Filipino Roberto Lerio has regained the Australian bantamweight title with a stunning 3rd round knockout over former two-time Olympian and Commonwealth Games representative Brad Hore at the Royal International Convention Center in Brisbane, Australia.

Lerio who first won the vacant 118 pound title with a ten round split decision over Jason Cooper on April 14, 2012 after which he moved up to super bantamweight and lost a ten round decision to Cooper in a rematch on November 30, 2012 decided to drop back to bantamweight and succeeded in winning the title for a second time by dropping Hore, nicknamed “The Pocket Rocket” three times in the 3rd round ending the bout at 2:53 of the round.

Lerio, the younger brother of the duo of Danilo and Arlan Lerio who represented the Philippines in the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, is from General Santos City but lives and fights out of North Sydney.

Nicknamed “Hands of Stone” the 26 year old Lerio has a record of 15-17-1 with 6 knockouts.

Prior to the title showdown 31 year old  southpaw Hore told the Sunshine Coast Daily that he was taking a risk in accepting the title fight but maintained he didn’t have the luxury of time.

Since making his pro debut in July last year after a two-year break, Hore has had a path mapped out from state to national to regional and finally world titles.

Lerio was decidedly the far more experienced fighter but despite the risks Hore said it took him little time to accep the title shot.

The Sunshine Coast Daily reported that given his nage, Hore said he did not have the luxury nof being able to pad his record and build himself up against a series of inexperienced opponents.

He said “I’m taking my chances , but this is a big chance for me.”

Hore said the fight was initially intended to be “a warm-up fight for his state title fight in May but I jumped at the opportunity to fight for a national title.”

The Aussie former Olympian trained twice a dsay, six days a week including three sessions with strength and conditioning coachKurt Vogel. using thrwwSu

"This fight (tonight's abandoned bout) was only supposed to be my warm-up for my state title fight in May, but I jumped at the opportunity (to fight for a national title)."

The bout is scheduled for 10 rounds, also a step up. In preparation, Hore has been training two times a day, six days a week, including three sessions with strength-and-conditioning coach Kurt Vogel.

The April 20 card was co-promoted by former English world champion Ricky Hatton and broadcast into eight million homes via the Eurosport television network.

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